The Australian dollar and yen traded weaker in Asia on Monday with little regional data in focus and more assured expectations of a Federal Reserve rate hike this month.
In Australia, the AI/HIA November construction index fell 1.4 points to 50.7 as new orders declined in all groups.
In the week ahead, investors will be looking ahead to Friday’s U.S. data on retail sales and inflation for fresh indications on the strength of the economy.
Central bank meetings in the U.K., Switzerland and New Zealand will also be in focus.
On Monday, the Swiss National Bank is to publish data on its foreign currency reserves. This data is closely scrutinized for indications of the size of the bank’s operations in currency markets.
Bank of England Governor Mark Carney is to testify before the European Parliament Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, in Brussels.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.03% to 98.30.
Last week, the dollar strengthened against the euro and the yen on Friday after a robust U.S. jobs report for November bolstered expectations that the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates later this month.
The Labor Department reported that the U.S. economy added 211,000 jobs last month, after increasing an upwardly revised 298,000 in October.
The report hardened expectations that the Fed will hike interest rates for the first time since 2006 at its upcoming meeting on December 15-16. Higher U.S. interest rates would make the dollar more attractive to yield-seeking investors.