Dollar edges lower, euro climbs off multi-month lows after ECB meeting

Dollar edges lower, euro climbs off multi-month lows after ECB meeting

At 03:20 ET (07:20 GMT), the Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six other currencies, traded 0.1% lower to 104.982, falling from the previous session’s six-month peak of 105.43.

EUR/USD rose 0.2% to 1.0667, bouncing from Thursday’s new three-month low seen in the wake of the latest ECB policy-setting meeting.

Although the central bank raised its key interest rate by 25 basis points to a record peak on Thursday, it also signaled this will likely be its final increase in its more-than year-long fight against high inflation.

“With today’s decision we have made sufficient contributions under current assessment to returning inflation to target in a timely manner,” said ECB Christine Lagarde, in the press conference following the rate announcement. 

The central bank also raised its forecasts for inflation, which it now expects to come down more slowly towards its 2% target over the next two years, while cutting its expectations for economic growth.

“A further weakening of the economy and more traction in a disinflationary trend will make it very hard to find arguments for additional rate hikes any time soon,” analysts at ING, said in a note.

The dollar had surged overnight after U.S. retail sales received a boost from higher gasoline prices, increasing 0.6% in August versus an estimated 0.2% rise, while U.S. producer prices rose by more than anticipated in August.

The Federal Reserve is still expected to keep interest rates on hold when it meets next week, but the resilience of the economy is likely to mean that the U.S. central bank reiterates its hawkish stance.

“Evidence of slower disinflation has provided an incentive to keep one hike in the dot plot projections for the end of 2023, while resilient U.S. data may well see a revision higher of the 2024 median plot (currently embedding 100bp of easing),” added ING. “We doubt that sort of adjustment would come as a shock to markets, but would further discourage bearish positioning on the dollar.”

Elsewhere, USD/CNY fell 0.1% to 7.2704, but the yuan buoyed by industrial production and retail sales data coming in higher than expected for August, indicating some resilience in the economy.

USD/JPY rose 0.2% to 147.74, with focus turning to a Bank of Japan meeting next week, following some signals from policymakers that an end to its negative rate regime was close.

GBP/USD rose 0.2% to 1.2429, hovering above a three-month low, with the Bank of England set to meet next week having raised interest rates for the 14th time in a row at its last meeting.

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