Forex Comment Sep 08

Dollar steadies in FX markets

USD was slightly stronger against a basket of currencies at 93.115 while the yuan eased after controversial remarks by President Trump about economic decoupling

by Reuters
Dollar steadies in FX markets
A US dollar banknote is seen in this illustration taken on May 26, 2020 by Dado Ruvic for Reuters.

The dollar steadied on Tuesday as investors pondered whether policy signals from the European Central Bank this week could weaken the euro and doubts about a recovery in tech stocks lingered after last week's rout.

Fresh tensions between Washington and Beijing after US President Donald Trump again raised the idea of decoupling the US and Chinese economies appeared to have little impact.

Trump's remarks were widely seen as electioneering and follow news of the possible US blacklisting of China's largest chip-maker, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC), which has hit many Chinese tech firms listed onshore and offshore.

YUAN DIPS

In foreign exchange markets, the dollar was slightly stronger against a basket of currencies at 93.115 and firmed marginally against the euro at $1.1816 with the main focus on this week's ECB policy meeting.

The yuan dipped in thin trade on Tuesday as the dollar steadied and sentiment was dampened by President Trump's remarks about economic decoupling.

The dollar bought 6.8438 yuan at 8pm Hong Kong time on Tuesday.

Most analysts in Europe did not expect a change in the European Central Bank's policy stance but are looking at its inflation forecasts and whether it seems concerned by the euro's strength.

"Rangebound trading will likely remain predominant until Thursday when the ECB meets," UniCredit analysts said in a note.

Sterling fell to a two-week low against the dollar after the European Union told Britain on Monday there would be no trade deal if London tries to override the Brexit divorce deal it signed in January.

The pound slipped more 0.3% at $1.3135 while against the euro it touched 0.90 pence, also a two-week low.

Gold prices softened on Tuesday, although rising doubts over the economic recovery from the Covid-19 slump limited losses. Spot gold was little changed at $1,9283.87 per ounce.

Oil fell below $42 a barrel, its fifth session of decline, pressured by concerns that a recovery in demand could weaken as coronavirus infections flare up around the world.

US crude futures fell 3.3% to $38.46 per barrel.

The 10-year US Treasury yield stood at 0.709%, off a five-month low of 0.504% touched in August.

(Reporting by Danilo Masoni in Milan, Hideyuki Sano in Tokyo and Julie Zhu in Hong Kong; Editing by Catherine Evans)