Dollar Suffers from U.S. Personnel Reshuffle
The dollar dived further against other currencies in Asia on Wednesday morning following news from the White House that hampered the investors’ confidence in the greenback. U.S. president Donald Trump unexpectedly fired the Secretary of State and prepared to impose tariffs on China.
The U.S. dollar index that tracks the greenback against a basket of six major currencies slumped 0.16% to 89.56 at 10:54pm ET, the lowest of this week.
President Trump reportedly ousted his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Twitter on Tuesday - another personnel shakeup from the administration following the departure of top economic advisor Gary Cohn last week. Reports that suggested the U.S. is planning to impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of Chinese imports also received some attention.
The USD/JPY pair traded 0.11% lower, as a series of fear-inducing news from the Trump administration made investors turn to the safe haven currency overnight. The Bank of Japan’s minutes were released on Tuesday, in which governor Haruhiko Kuroda along with his fellow board members were said to adhere to their loosening monetary policy until inflation reaches the 2% target. Japan Machine Orders for January were also up much higher than the forecast 5.6%, printing at 8.2% after the previous period's rate of -11.9%.
The Aussie edged 0.18% up against the dollar at 0.7874, as upbeat Chinese data were cited as tailwind for the sentiment-linked Aussie. China’s industrial production figure of February rose 7.2% year-on-year versus the estimates 6.2%, and fixed asset investment gained 7.9% versus the expected 7.0%. Meanwhile, retail sales of February slightly missed the estimated 9.8% to come in at 9.7%. China is Australia’s largest trading partner and Chinese economic data releases tend to impact the Aussie.
Elsewhere, The People’s Bank of China set the fix rate of yuan against the dollar at 6.3205 versus Tuesday’s 6.3218. The USD/CNY pair was last quoted at 6.3137, down 0.10%.