The dollar was barely able to establish a clear direction in recent trading as economic data came in mixed. The Chicago PMI surprised with a jump from 58.3 to 59.4, outpacing the consensus at 57.0 to reflect a much stronger pace of industry expansion. The Fed Beige Book showed that most districts saw moderate growth but the pending home sales report printed a 1.3% slump instead of the projected 0.7% uptick.
The euro managed to score some wins versus the comdolls and the pound even as flash CPI readings from the region turned out weaker than expected. The headline reading came in at 1.4% versus the 1.5% forecast and the earlier 1.9% increase while the core reading landed at 0.9% versus 1.0% from the previous 1.2% gain. The region’s jobless rate improved from 9.4% to 9.3% though. Final manufacturing PMI readings from its top economies are due next.
The pound took another hit when a poll from The Sun indicated a narrower lead for Theresa May’s Conservative Party. It showed a 44% stronghold for Conservatives and 38% for Labour. UK net lending to individuals was also weaker than expected at 4.3 billion versus the 4.5 billion consensus. UK manufacturing PMI is due next and a dip from 57.3 to 56.5 is expected.
The franc barely budged when SNB head Jordan started jawboning again. He mentioned that an overvalued franc puts pressure on the Swiss economy but franc traders don’t seem to be bothered until they see actual central bank action. The Credit Suisse Economic Expectations index is up from 22.2 to 30.8 and the Swiss manufacturing PMI is due next.
The yen was able to hold on to its recent gains as risk aversion stayed in play. Japanese capital spending data is due next and a 3.9% figure is eyed, slightly higher than the earlier 3.8% read. The final manufacturing PMI is also due but no changes to the initial 52.0 estimate is expected.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The comdolls were slightly weaker even after Canada printed a higher than expected monthly GDP growth of 0.5% versus 0.3% in March. Oil prices remain under pressure ahead of inventory data from API and EIA. Australia has its private capital expenditure data and retail sales figures due next, along with China’s Caixin manufacturing PMI. New Zealand is due to print its quarterly overseas trade index as well.