The US dollar was in a weak spot for the most part of the day but staged a late rally when Fed officials started sounding more upbeat and hawkish. The Fed Beige Book also indicated modest to moderate growth in 11 out of 12 Fed districts, with strong price pressures from most. FOMC member Mester expects more contribution from tax reform to growth while Fed official Evans shifted to a more optimistic tone. Building permits and housing starts are due next, along with the Philly Fed index.
The euro was weighed down by comments on how the currency’s appreciation could dampen inflation and tightening odds. Final CPI readings were unchanged at 1.4% for the headline reading and 0.9% for the core figure. There are no major reports due from the euro zone today so ECB commentary could continue to influence the shared currency’s direction.
The pound took advantage of euro weakness and was able to recover slightly against the commodity currencies despite the lack of top-tier data from the UK. Today has another empty economic calendar so market sentiment could push pound pairs around.
The franc had a mixed run but was mostly weaker to the higher-yielding currencies as risk-taking came into play. There were no reports out of the Swiss economy then and none are due today, so sentiment and currency-specific action could drive the franc.
The yen took advantage of dollar weakness but gave up some of its gains later on. There were no reports out of Japan then while today has the revised industrial production numbers due, although analysts don’t expect a change from the earlier 0.6% estimate. As with the franc, sentiment could be the main driver, along with dollar direction.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The Loonie had a volatile run ahead of the BOC statement but eventually held its ground as Poloz and Wilkins reiterated their optimistic views. The central bank hiked by 0.25% but expressed concerns about NAFTA. Australia’s employment change figure printed a 34.7K gain versus the estimated 13.2K increase. The previous reading enjoyed an upgrade from 61.6K to 63.6K. China has a bunch of major reports namely GDP, retail sales, industrial production, and fixed asset investment due.