The dollar was down on Thursday morning in Asia, moving towards the middle of a range that it has stuck to for the past month. Investors now look to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s policy decision, due to be handed down next week, for further clues on when the central bank will begin asset tapering.
The U.S. Dollar Index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies inched down 0.05% to 92.485 by 11:57 PM ET (3:57 AM GMT).
The USD/JPY pair inched down 0.05% to 109.31.
The AUD/USD pair edged down 0.14% to 0.7324. Australian jobs data released earlier in the day showed that the employment change contracted by 146,300, while the full employment change contracted by 68,000, in August. The unemployment rate was 4.5%.
The NZD/USD pair edged up 0.15% to 0.7114, with New Zealand’s GDP growing a better than expected 2.8% quarter-on-quarter and 17.4% year-on-year in the second quarter.
The USD/CNY pair inched up 0.04% to 6.4347 while the GBP/USD pair inched down 0.02% to 1.3834.
“We’re waiting for the Fed next week that remains the key focus. I do not think the dollar is going to go too far in either direction before that,” Barclays senior FX strategist Shinichiro Kadota told Reuters.
“The Fed’s two-day policy meeting ending Sep. 22 should provide some clarity on the outlook for both asset tapering and eventual interest rate hikes.”
The yen’s strong performance on Wednesday may have been helped by foreign flows into Japanese stocks with the Nikkei reaching a multi-decade high this week, as well as covering of short positions, said
Japan also released trade data earlier in the day showed that exports grew 26.2% year-on-year and imports grew 44.7% year-on-year in August. The trade balance was at a deficit of JPY635.4 billion ($5.8 billion).
Meanwhile, Norway’s crown rose slightly to 8.5710 per dollar, moving back toward the more than two-month high of 8.5598 reached overnight as oil prices rose. The crown also hit its strongest level against the euro since Jun. 25 at 10.1119.
“EUR-NOK is one of the preferred exposures to play a rising crude price, and we’re seeing a solid bearish trend here,” Pepperstone head of research Chris Weston said in a note.
“If Brentand WTI futures are headed for their respective double tops then EUR-NOK is going one way in my view.”