Daily Afternoon Report 15.04.2016

The dollar slipped lower against the other major currencies on Friday, despite the release of upbeat manufacturing activity data from New York, as investors remained cautious ahead of additional U.S. economic reports due later in the trading session.

USD/JPY dropped 0.48% to 108.92, pulling away from a one-week high of 109.73 hit earlier.

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said that its general business conditions index improved to 9.65 this month from a reading of 0.62 in March. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 2.21 in April.

Investors were now eyeing the release of U.S. reports on industrial production and consumer sentiment due later Friday for further indications on the strength of the economy.

EUR/USD edged up 0.15% to trade at 1.1283, off the previous session’s two-and-a-half week low of 1.1233.

Meanwhile, the dollar was lower against the pound, with GBP/USD up 0.18% at 1.4179 and was steady against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF at 0.9671.

The Australian dollar was little changed, with AUD/USD at 0.7697, while NZD/USD climbed 0.80% to 0.6901.

Elsewhere, USD/CAD rose 0.35% to 1.2889, pulling away from Wednesday’s nine-month low of 1.2743.

Statistics Canada reported on Friday that manufacturing sales dropped by 3.3% in February, compared to expectations for a 1.5% decline, after an increase of 2.3% the previous month.

Elsewhere, data showed that China’s gross domestic product rose by an annualized rate of 6.7% in the first quarter, in line with market expectations, following a growth rate of 6.8% in the three months to December.

Another report showed that Chinese industrial production increased by an annual rate of 6.8% in March, exceeding expectations for a 5.9% gain, after a 5.4% rise the previous month.

The positive data eased concerns over slowdown in the world’s second largest economy.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.16% at 94.80, after hitting a two-and-a-half week peak of 95.21 on Thursday.