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Dollar treads water as key central bank meetings loom

7/30/2018, 10:18:35 AMBasics of Trading
Dollar treads water as key central bank meetings loom

The dollar trod water against its peers on Monday, as market participants awaited key central bank meetings this week, which could set the near-term course for currencies.

Central banks in focus include the Bank of Japan, which ends a two-day meeting on Tuesday, and the Federal Reserve, which concludes its policy meeting on Wednesday. The Bank of England also makes a policy decision on Thursday.

The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies stood little changed at 94.662 (DXY) after dipping slightly on Friday. Upbeat second quarter U.S. gross domestic product data failed to lift the greenback, as markets had mostly priced in strong figures.

The U.S. currency was 0.05 percent lower at 110.970 yen following a loss of about 0.2 percent on Friday.

Masafumi Yamamoto, chief forex strategist at Mizuho Securities in Tokyo, said investors will be more interested in U.S. GDP data that incorporates July, which is when tariffs against Chinese goods were activated.

"On the other hand, the two-year Treasury yield is rising, underscoring strong rate hike expectations in the market. This is limiting the dollar's losses, although movements are likely to be limited ahead of the BOJ meeting," Yamamoto said.

The two-year Treasury yield (US2YT=RR) rose to a decade high of 2.69 towards the end of last week.

The financial markets are keen to see whether the BOJ is mulling taking steps to make its massive stimulus program more sustainable.

The euro nudged up 0.05 percent to $1.1659 (EUR=), extending Friday's modest gains.

The pound was nearly flat at $1.3110 .

Sterling posted its third straight weekly loss last week, hit by concerns about the progress of Brexit talks. It will be looking for some relief on Thursday, when the BoE is widely expected to raise interest rates for only the second time since the 2008 financial crisis.

The Australian dollar dipped 0.05 percent to $0.7398 , trimming some of its gains after rising roughly 0.4 percent on Friday against a broadly sagging dollar.