The US dollar regained FX trading ground last week as risk aversion dominated the financial markets, in the wake of a worsening Ebola crisis and geopolitical tensions in Hong Kong. There were no reports released from the US economy last Friday and there are no reports up for release today, as banks are on holiday. Risk sentiment might continue to drive currency price action, with the US dollar likely to stay supported unless risk appetite improves.
The euro gave up more ground to its FX trading counterparts last week, as medium-tier data from the euro zone came in mixed. French industrial production stayed flat instead of showing a 0.2% decline while Italian industrial production marked a weaker than expected 0.3% uptick versus the projected 0.6% gain. There are no major reports due from the euro zone today.
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The pound was in a weak FX trading spot last Friday, with mixed economic data from the UK. The trade balance was stronger than expected at a deficit of 9.1 billion GBP instead of the projected 9.6 billion GBP shortfall. Construction output slumped by 3.9% instead of showing the projected 0.5% uptick. There are no reports due from the UK economy today.
The franc weakened to the dollar in recent FX trading, as there were no reports to keep the franc supported on Friday. There are still no reports up for release from Switzerland today, leaving the franc sensitive to euro zone data and risk flows.
The yen was a big winner in recent FX trading, even against the US dollar. Risk aversion helped support the lower-yielding currency, despite weak data from the Japanese economy. The BOJ minutes indicated that policymakers are concerned about weakening production but didn’t see the need to boost easing just yet. Tertiary industry activity marked a 0.1% decline instead of the estimated 0.2% increase. There are no reports due from Japan today.
The comdolls gave up ground on risk aversion last week, although the Canadian dollar received a good boost from strong jobs data. For the month of September, Canada saw an employment gain of 74.1K and a jobless rate improvement from 7.0% to 6.8%, as full-time hiring picked up. Earlier today, China’s trade balance release came in weaker than expected at a surplus of 31.0 billion USD versus the projected 41.2 billion USD surplus, indicating weaker trade performance in the world’s second largest economy.
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