The dollar extended losses against the other major currencies on Wednesday, as investors eyed the release of U.S. manufacturing activity data later in the day, while the previous session’s mixed U.S. economic reports continued to weigh on the greenback.
USD/JPY tumbled 1.36% to 109.20.
Data on Tuesday showed that while U.S. consumer spending rose at the fastest rate in almost seven years in April, consumer confidence deteriorate and a gauge of business activity in the Chicago region disappointed.
The mixed data prompted investors to slightly push back expectations on the timing of the next rate hike by the Federal Reserve.
Expectations for a near-term rate hike mounted after U.S. central bank chief Janet Yellen said late last week it could be appropriate to raise rates in the coming months if the economy and the labor market continue to pick up as expected.
In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Wednesday he was planning to delay a scheduled sales tax hike by two-and-a-half years, amid on-going weakness in the economy.
EUR/USD gained 0.41% to 1.1176.
Research group Markit said the euro zone’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index remained unchanged at 51.5 last month, in line with expectations.
The dollar was higher against the pound, with GBP/USD down 0.28% at 1.4441 and was lower against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF sliding 0.49% to 0.9892.
Market said the U.K. manufacturing PMI ticked up to 50.1 last month from 49.4 in April. Economists had forecast a reading of 49.6.
But the pound came under pressure after the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development cut its forecast for U.K. economic growth this year to 1.7% from an estimate of 2.1% three months ago.
The Australian and New Zealand dollars were stronger, with AUD/USD up 0.48% at 0.7268 and with NZD/USD advancing 0.87% to 0.6824.
The Aussie was boosted after official data showed that the county’s gross domestic product rose by 1.1% in the first quarter, beating expectations for a 0.8% gain.
Year-on-year, GDP increased by 3.1% in the first quarter, compared to expectations for a 2.8% rise.
Elsewhere, USD/CAD fell 0.29% to 1.3056.
Also Wednesday, data showed that China’s official manufacturing PMI remained unchanged at 50.1 in May, compared to expectations for a downtick to 50.0.
However, China’s Caixin manufacturing PMI slipped to 49.2 in May from 49.4 the previous month, compared to expectations for a downtick to 49.3.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.44% at 95.41, off Monday’s two-month peak of 95.96.