The U.S. dollar rose against most currencies on Monday as concerns about the Covid-19 made investors cautious, while they also awaited more information about the global economic recovery before making their next moves. Investors are waiting for the U.S. inflation data as they would like to learn more about the situation ahead of testimony by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Wednesday and Thursday.
At 11:08 GMT, the dollar gained 0.22% against a basket of currencies while the euro dropped 0.26% at $1.1848 against the greenback.
Another powerful central bank, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), made an unexpected decision on Friday. The PBOC made the decision to reduce the amount of cash that banks must hold as reserves. The central bank decided to cut the reserve requirement ratio for all banks by 50 basis points. The country’s economy largely rebounded to its pre-pandemic growth levels. But growth is slowing down and smaller companies are bearing the brunt of a recent surge in raw material prices.
The yuan was just slightly lower at 6.4750 per dollar after the Chinese shares as well as bonds rose.
On Monday, the yen stood at 110.18 per dollar, off to Thursday’s one-month high of 109.535.
Dollar and British pound
The British pound drooped 0.36% against the dollar to $1.3860. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to agree with plans to scrap nearly all remaining Covid-19 restrictions in England from July 19, despite a surge in cases to levels unseen for months.
Most investors do not expect the global economic recovery to be derailed by fresh waves of Covid-19 infections. Nonetheless, vulnerable currencies such as the tourism-exposed Thai baht suffered losses.
The Thai baht was trading above Friday’s low but lost about 5% against the dollar in a month. On Monday, the country’s central bank warned the economy might miss its projections as the virus curbs its growth.
The rand dropped more than 2% to a low of 14.4968 to the dollar due to violence. Sporadic violence and lootings continued on Monday, after a weekend of unrest by the support of Jacob Zuma. The country’s top court began hearing a challenge by the country’s former president Jacob Zuma against a 15-month prison term. Zuma’s supporters claim that he is the victim of a political witch hunt orchestrated by allies of President Cyril Ramaphosa.