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Dollar's Drive Higher Can't Make Up for Rocky Week

12/24/2018, 11:43:09 AMBasics of Trading
Dollar's Drive Higher Can't Make Up for Rocky Week

The U.S. dollar was set for a weekly losses against its rivals despite a surge on Friday as traders mulled over the prospect of a U.S. government shutdown.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, rose by 0.70% to 96.95.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday threatened a “very long” government shutdown ahead of a midnight deadline, if the Senate fails to pass spending legislation that includes $5 billion in funding for his border wall.

The strong gains for the dollar come even as a bevy mostly negative U.S. economy fuelled some concerns about economic growth.

Gross domestic product increased at a 3.4% annual rate in the July-September period, the Commerce Department said in its final estimate, below a previous estimate of 3.5%.

The Federal Reserve's preferred inflation measure, the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index excluding food and energy, rose 1.9% in the 12 months through November.

Core PCE prices were a little weaker-than-expected, suggesting the Fed "can now take a pause in rate hikes in the first quarter without having to worry about inflationary pressures," CIBC said in a note.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in a press conference early this week that monetary policy decisions would be data dependent and stressed that rate hikes would be put on ice should inflation fall below the central bank's 2% target.

The dollar was also helped by a plunge in the euro and weakness in sterling.

EUR/USD fell 0.67% to $1.1369 and GBP/USD fell 0.15% to $1.2639.

USD/CAD rose 0.58% to $1.3589 amid mixed data from Canada as retail sales fell short and GDP growth topped economists' forecasts.

USD/JPY rose 0.04% to Y111.32.