Daily Afternoon Report 24.04.2015
The dollar remained broadly lower against a basket of other major currencies on Friday, after data showed that U.S. durable goods orders rose more than expected last month, while core durable goods orders fell unexpectedly. Official data showed that U.S. durable goods orders rose 4.0% in March, beating expectations for a 0.6% gain after a 1.4% decline the previous month. Core durable goods orders, which exclude transportation items, fell 0.2% last month, confounding expectations for a 0.3% rise. February’s figure wad revised to a 1.3% decline from a previously estimated 0.6% fall. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.24% to 97.20. EUR/USD was up 0.25% to 1.0850, holding just under a two-and-a-half week high of 1.0899 hit earlier in the session. The single currency strengthened after the Ifo Institute of Economic Research said that Germany’s business climate index rose to a 10-month high of 108.6 in April from 107.9 in March, beating expectations for an uptick to 108.4. The pound hit more than one-month highs, with GBP/USD up 066% to 1.5154. Elsewhere, the dollar was lower against the yen, with USD/JPY down 0.23% to 119.31 and steady against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF at 0.9546. Earlier Friday, Swiss National Bank Chairman Thomas Jordan warned that the franc could rise due to uncertainty over the Greek debt crisis and it the central bank remains prepared to intervene in foreign exchange markets to weaken what it sees as too strong a currency. Jordan said the SNB is monitoring the effect of the crisis on the franc and the potential impact on Switzerland “very closely.” The SNB chairman was speaking at the central bank’s general meeting of shareholders, in Berne. The Australian dollar was higher, with AUD/USD rising 0.38% to 0.7584, while NZD/USD edged down 0.09% to 0.7584.