Dollar soft after cooler U.S inflation data, eyes on Fed

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SINGAPORE/LONDON — The dollar was

trading near its weakest levels in months against the euro and

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pound on Wednesday after sliding overnight on

cooler-than-expected inflation data which fueled bets the

Federal Reserve will outline a slower rate hike path.

After delivering four consecutive 75 basis point (bp) hikes,

the U.S. central bank is widely expected to increase interest

rates by 50 bp as it concludes its two-day meeting on Wednesday.

Traders will then turn their focus to Thursday meetings of

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the Bank of England and the European Central Bank, where

consensus is also for a 50 bp rate hike.

The euro was steady against the dollar at $1.0642,

not far off a six-month intraday high of $1.0673 it touched in

the previous session after U.S. CPI data.

The pound, which also hit a six month high after

the U.S. figures, was flat at $1.2376 after a brief dip when

British inflation data too showed a sharper than expected fall.

But year-on-year inflation of 10.7%, compared to a predicted

10.9%, remains painfully high for British consumers.

U.S. consumer prices rose less than expected for a second

straight month in November, with underlying consumer prices

advancing by the least in 15 months, Tuesday’s report from the

Labor Department showed.

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That data served to reinforce existing expectations that the

Fed will slow the pace of its rate increase to 50 bp, and so the

main focus of Wednesday’s meeting will be the Fed’s quarterly

‘dot plot’, which shows where policymakers expect rates to be at

the end of each year, and remarks by chair Jerome Powell.

An increase in the median ‘dot’ for the level at the end of

2023 from the 4.625% projection at end September is widely

expected, but a key question is how much it will rise by.

“The extent of the uptick revision will matter for rates and

USD,” said Christopher Wong, a currency strategist at OCBC in


“A revision higher than median of 5.125% may be interpreted

as hawkish and could weigh on sentiment and halt the dollar’s

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decline. But if it turns out that despite the hawkish talk and

there is only slight uptick to median, then the USD may face

more selling pressure.”

The dollar index, which measures the greenback versus

six major currencies, was down a touch at 103.91, having made a

six-month low of 103.57 in the wake of the inflation data.

It has fallen 9% since hitting a 20-year high in September

as expectations of high and rising U.S. interest rates, which

fueled dollar gains, have started to ease.

The dollar was at 135.27 yen, down 0.2% after

sliding 1.5% on Tuesday, and at 0.9277 Swiss francs,

down a whisker having fallen to an eight-month low of 0.9230 on



Currency bid prices at 0906 GMT

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Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid

Previous Change



$1.0642 $1.0630 +0.11% -6.39% +1.0645 +1.0619


135.2750 135.5050 -0.16% +17.62% +135.7250 +135.2300

Euro/Yen 143.98 144.16 -0.12% +10.48% +144.2600 +143.8700


0.9277 0.9286 -0.08% +1.72% +0.9296 +0.9271


1.2376 1.2365 +0.07% -8.50% +1.2381 +1.2345


1.3540 1.3544 -0.03% +7.09% +1.3574 +1.3536


0.6867 0.6858 +0.15% -5.52% +0.6870 +0.6822


Dollar/Dollar 0.6446 0.6463 -0.29% -5.84% +0.6464 +0.6434

All spots

Tokyo spots

Europe spots


Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ

(Reporting by Ankur Banerjee in Singapore; Editing by Edwina

Gibbs, Simon Cameron-Moore and Alexander Smith)



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