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Dollar edges lower in early European trade

The dollar fell in early European trade Monday, retreating from Friday’s highs ahead of important U.S. inflation data this week. It might be another litmus test for the Federal Reserve’s thinking on the timing of interest rate hikes.

The Dollar Index, which tracks the dollar against a basket of six other currencies, was 0.1 percent lower at 94.252, after reaching a high of 94.645 on Friday, its highest level in almost a year.

Currencies

Furthermore, EUR/USD fell to 1.1564. It remained just above the 15-month low of 1.1513 set on Friday. USD/JPY climbed 0.1 percent to 113.56, regaining some of the ground lost last week. GBP/USD dipped 0.1 percent to 1.3487 after plunging as low as 1.3425 on Friday, a five-week low, following the Bank of England’s decision to keep interest rates unchanged.

In other news, the USD/CNY fell to 6.3976 as China’s export growth slowed in October but above estimates. This helped offset weak import data that pointed to an overall weakening in domestic demand.

The Fed

The Fed had asked for a more robust job market recovery before considering raising its benchmark interest rates, and they got it. Nonfarm payrolls climbed by 531,000 in October, while September data revised higher to reflect 312,000 jobs created rather than the previously reported 194,000. It comes ahead of the release of the latest U.S. inflation numbers on Wednesday, which is likely to show strong consumer growth, putting these central bankers’ determination to the test.

“Inflation will widen more, and the median CPI appears set to approach the greatest y/y rate in modern times,” Nordea analysts wrote in a note. They believe that Fed rate hikes are about seven or eight months away.

European stock futures edge lower

European stock markets anticipate opening moderately lower on Monday, with little meaningful direction at the start of a new week that contains important U.S. inflation data.

After statistics released over the weekend revealed, China’s exports achieved a record trade surplus in October. Still, poor import results contributed to evidence of a downturn in domestic demand. European equity markets received a lackluster handover from Asia on Monday. Still, today’s spotlight may be on the airlines and tourism sector. The United States should suspend pandemic travel restrictions that have banned many international visitors since early last year. It comes after Pfizer’s trial results for its antiviral Covid tablet boosted travel stocks on Friday.

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