Sat, December 02, 2023

U.S. Dollar Was Close to a 14-Month High Against the Euro 

U.S. dollar

The U.S. currency was close to a 14-month high against the euro on Thursday, as a surge in energy prices raised the risk for the U.S. Federal Reserve to act sooner to normalize policy. The dollar was slightly lower at $1.1563 per euro. On Wednesday, the greenback reached $1.1529 for the first time since July of last year.

On Wednesday, the price of crude oil reached its highest level in seven years before taking a breather from its recent torrid gains. Meanwhile, natural gas jumped to a record peak in Europe. Moreover, coal prices from major exporters also hit all-time highs. 

The dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency against a basket of six other major currencies, was little changed at 94.153, following a nearly 0.5% climb over the past two sessions. That took the dollar index back to near the one-year high of 94.504 reached last week. 

Another safe-haven currency,  the Japanese yen was a touch higher at 111.29 per dollar. It was close to the middle of its range of the past week and a half. 

Dollar, jobs report, and the Federal Reserve 

The country’s central bank said it is likely to begin reducing its monthly bond purchases in the near future, before following up with interest rate increases, which could come as early as next year. 

The Federal Reserve is monitoring the state of the labor market. The U.S. non-farm payrolls report could provide additional clues to the timing of the central bank’s next moves. Economists expect continued improvement in the country’s labor market. 

Investors are also monitoring a number of speakers both from the Fed as well as the European Central Bank. Investors are waiting for the joint conference on inflation dynamics. The European Central Bank’s policymaker Isabel Schnabel speaks at 14:00 GMT.  While Loretta Mester, president, and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, speaks at 16:45 GMT

Elsewhere, uneasiness around the U.S. debt ceiling, which supported the U.S. dollar eased moderately, after the upper chamber of the U.S. Congress appeared near to a temporary deal. The Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell proposed that his party would allow an extension of the federal debt ceiling into December. 

When it comes to cryptocurrencies, it is hard not to mention Bitcoin. It hovered near an almost five-month high of $55,800 touched on Wednesday, last trading at around $54,686. 

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