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Dollar in Doldrums as U.S. Treasury Yields Extend Losses

3/26/2019, 11:57:18 AMMarket Analysis
Dollar in Doldrums as U.S. Treasury Yields Extend Losses

The dollar traded lower against its rivals on Monday as U.S. government bond yields extended their rout from last week amid ongoing fears of slowing global growth.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, fell by 0.18% to 95.98.

With little market-moving events on the calendar, investor focus continued to center on falling treasury yields following an inversion of part of the yield curve last week.

The yield curve serves as a kind of doomsday screen for the economy and when it inverts recession tend to follow. A yield curve inversion has preceded every recession over the past 60 years.

With sentiment tilting toward risk-off, the euro struggled to advance on its earlier gains despite the unexpectedly upbeat German IFO index topping economists' expectations.

EUR/USD fell 0.01% to $1.1312, just below session highs of $1.1328.

GBP/USD fell 0.24% to $1.3177 amid uncertainty over the future from U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May after some in the prime minister's party called on her to quit. May confirmed on Monday that the U.K. has requested to delay Brexit.

May also attempted to play down the possibility of further indicative votes, which allow U.K. lawmakers to put forward a range of options over the path of Brexit, to establish which, if any, may win majority support to break the current Brexit impasse. The outcome of any successful indicative vote in parliament may not be backed by the EU, May said.

If a withdrawal deal fails to win the backing of parliament by April 12, the U.K. will leave the EU without a deal.

Some have suggested the "Norway Plus," or Common Market 2.0 proposal, which has been backed by some members of the U.K government and the opposition may also resurface a viable option. But others remain wary, saying the plan would go against many of May's red lines on Brexit, including free movement of people.

The plan would also "seek to agree a side letter with the EU agreeing that all efforts would be made to deliver the future relationship before the end of the transition period – therefore, removing the need for the backstop ever to be activated."

USD/CAD fell 0.10% to C$1.3413 but downside was limited as the loonie slipped after oil prices struggled to hold onto gains.

USD/JPY rose 0.08% to Y110.14 amid an uptick in demand for the safe-haven yen as risk-off sentiment continued on Wall Street.