Latest
Recommended
Published: Sun, August 13, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Dollar hits 8-week low vs yen

Dollar hits 8-week low vs yen

"The market hates uncertainty and that's certainly what we have now", said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank.

Investors are also awaiting U.S. inflation data due later this week for clues on when the U.S. Federal Reserve would begin reducing its $4.2 trillion bond portfolio.

Charter Communications rose 2.9 percent on news Altice is exploring a bid for the cable giant.

USD/JPY also remained under pressure with a dip below the 109.00 level for fresh 8-week lows and this combination inevitably put further upward pressure on gold. It has weakened 1.5 percent since hitting a 2-1/2 year high of 1.1910 on August 2.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 71 points, or 0.3 percent, to 22,013.

Brewing tensions between the USA and North Korea put investors in a selling mood again Thursday, dragging US stocks lower for the third day in a row.

The euro edged 0.3 percent lower to 1.1726 against the dollar.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 24.40 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,372.54.

The Swiss franc has gained about 1.3 percent against the dollar so far this week, while the yen has advanced around 1.5 percent in the same period. The 30-stock index snapped a 10-day winning streak and a streak of nine straight record closes.

Many world stock markets have hit record or multi-year highs in recent weeks, leaving them vulnerable to a selloff, and the tensions over North Korea proved to be the trigger. Japan is the world's biggest creditor country and there is an assumption investors there will repatriate funds in a crisis. Britain's FTSE 100 sank 1.4 percent.

"If the data continues to come in on the softer side, the market might start to price the Fed staying on hold this year", said Sireen Harajli, FX strategist at Mizuho in NY.

MSCI's main index of Asia-Pacific shares, excluding Japan, was last down 0.6 percent.

Several financial sector companies also helped pull down the market.

Meanwhile on the domestic front, USA initial jobless claims for the week ended July 29 exceeded consensus estimates (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/us-jobless-claims-rise-by-3000-to-244000-2017-08-10), recording 244,000 versus 240,000 expected this morning.

The recent resilience of data on the USA economy has not dampened the latest climb, despite depressing prices earlier in the week as reports returned high employment figures ahead of further United States inflation information this week. The Shanghai Composite slipped 1.1 percent to 3,240.69.

USA crude was down 0.9 percent at $48.16 per barrel, on track for a weekly loss of 2.9 percent.

However, an Associated Press report that the US and North Korea have been engaged in back channel talks (https://apnews.com/686ac7c761694b28b67793a1d8297145?link=mktw) for several months even as they exchange incendiary threats helped to soothe some of the jitters.

The Labor Department said its consumer price index inched up by 0.1% in July after coming in unchanged in June.

Like this: