Reuters, NEW YORK and LONDON
The US dollar weakened further against a basket of major currencies on Friday after a much weaker-than-expected US wage report, which should prevent the US Federal Reserve from cutting its massive stimulus measures.
Non-farm payrolls rose 235,000 last month, well below the 728,000 forecast by economists in a Reuters poll, while the unemployment rate fell to 5.2% from 5.4% the previous month .
The US dollar index fell to a low of 91.941, its lowest level since August 4, and was down 0.12% to 92.12, down 0.6% for the week.
In Taipei, the new Taiwan dollar appreciated against the greenback, gaining NT $ 0.029 to close at NT $ 27.703, up 0.8% for the week.
The US dollar was moderated due to uncertainty over the direction of the Fed’s policy. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said last Friday that while the reduction in its stimulus measures could begin this year if job growth continues, the central bank was in no rush to do so.
The increase in COVID-19 cases in recent weeks has raised concerns that the economic recovery is stalling.
Jobs data would likely keep the Fed on hold.
“It’s the ultimate overhead coverage, it’s real overhead coverage, they don’t have to do anything for a while,” said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade in Chicago. “There is absolutely no reason to [Powell] do anything about it except say, “I told you so,” and that certainly makes the September meeting a lot less decisive.
The euro strengthened against the greenback following the report, hitting a high of 1.1909 to match its best level since July 30.
The single currency was supported by data earlier this week that showed regional inflation at a decade-high and hawkish comments from European Central Bank officials ahead of a policy meeting on Friday.
The euro climbed 0.08% for the last time to US $ 1.1882. The Japanese yen rose 0.15% against the greenback to 109.76 yen to the US dollar, gaining ground after employment data, but reacted little to Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s move to retire at the end of the month.
The British pound hit a three-week high after the jobs report. The pound rose 0.03% against the US dollar to US $ 1.3838, after peaking at US $ 1.3865 shortly after the jobs report was released.
This summit was last seen on August 16.
The pound had seen listless trading this week in the absence of significant UK economic data or speeches from policymakers.
The speed of Britain’s COVID-19 vaccination program had helped the pound to outperform among the G10 currencies this year, but it has since lost that krone amid some potential clouds on the horizon economic.
These included slowing credit card spending, fewer positive surprises in the data and increasing cases of COVID-19 among seniors, analysts at Nomura said.
CNA Supplementary Reports, with Editor-in-Chief
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