Dollar’s advance stalls as U.S. yields bounce slows

FILE PHOTO: Employee counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a foreign exchange house in Monterrey
FILE PHOTO: An employee counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a foreign exchange house in Monterrey, Mexico, November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Daniel Becerril

April 3, 2019

By Shinichi Saoshiro

TOKYO (Reuters) – The dollar was steady against its peers on Wednesday, as the recent bounce in U.S. bond yields stalled on increasingly dovish rhetoric from global central banks.

The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies was little changed at 97.313, having lost some traction after climbing a 3-1/2-week peak of 95.517 the previous day.

The greenback had reached the 3-1/2-week high as ebbing risk aversion in the broader markets pushed up long-term U.S. yields from 15-month lows.

The sharp bounce by Treasury yields ran out of steam, however, slowing the dollar’s advance in turn.

The dollar was a shade lower at 111.21 yen but within distance of a two-week high of 111.46 scaled overnight.

“Major central banks are embracing dovish rhetoric, which supports ‘risk on’ in the markets. The yen stands to remain on the defensive under such conditions,” said Masafumi Yamamoto, chief forex strategist at Mizuho Securities in Tokyo.

The Reserve Bank of Australia on Tuesday left interest rates unchanged as expected but its statements were seen by some as hints toward a shift to easier monetary policy going forward.

The Australian dollar, which declined significantly after the RBA policy decision on Tuesday, extended losses to stand at $0.7057, down 0.2 percent on the day.

The pound was effectively flat at $1.3131.

Sterling had edged up 0.25 percent the previous day after Prime Minister Theresa May said she would seek another Brexit delay to agree an EU divorce deal with the opposition Labour leader, a last-ditch gambit to break an impasse over Britain’s departure.

The euro was steady at $1.1203 after slipping overnight to $1.1183, its lowest since March 8, weighed by a decline in German bund yields.

German yields have been anchored below zero as the deadlock over Brexit has fueled investor demand for the safe havens. [GVD/EUR]

(Reporting by Shinichi Saoshiro; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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