Daily Morning Report 01.02.2017
The Australian and New Zealand dollars moved lower on today, as the greenback recovered from the previous session’s losses ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monthly policy decision, due later in the day.
AUD/USD slipped 0.20% to 0.7571.
The greenback had tumbled on yesterday, following a number of remarks and policy decisions by new U.S. President Donald Trump.
In a meeting with the chief executives of several top drug makers on yesterday, Trump said that drug companies had outsourced production because of currency devaluation by other countries.
The remarks indicated that the new administration is focusing on currencies as part of its approach in relation to trade.
Investors also remained cautious following Trump’s controversial travel ban, which sparked widespread protests in the U.S. and led to the firing of acting Attorney General Sally Yates on Monday, after she told justice department lawyers not to defend it.
NZD/USD declined 0.48% to trade at 0.7277, off Tuesday’s nearly three-month peak of 0.7356.
Earlier today, Statistics New Zealand said that the number of employed people rose 0.8% in the fourth quarter of 2016, in line with expectations and after an increase of 1.4% in the three months to September.
However, New Zealand’s unemployment rate rose to 5.2% in the last quarter from 4.9% in the third quarter, disappointing expectations for a downtick to 4.8%.
Also today, data showed that China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index ticked down to 51.3 last month from 51.4 in December. Analysts had expected the index to fall to 51.2 in January.
China is Australia’s biggest export partner and New Zealand’s second biggest export partner.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.22% at 99.75, off the previous session’s nearly three-month low of 99.40.