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Dollar rises after U.S. producer prices surge

Economy Aug 12, 2021 03:02PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: An employee counts U.S. dollar bills at a money exchange in central Cairo, Egypt, March 20, 2019. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany./File Photo

By Saqib Iqbal Ahmed and Iain Withers

NEW YORK (Reuters) -The U.S. dollar advanced against a basket of currencies on Thursday, after data showed producer prices posted their largest annual increase in more than a decade in the 12 months through July, suggesting inflation pressures remain strong.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six rivals, was 0.1% higher at 93.019.

U.S. producer prices increased more than expected in July, a Labor Department report showed on Thursday, suggesting inflation could remain high as strong demand fuelled by the recovery continues to hurt supply chains.

The producer price index (PPI) for final demand increased 1.0% last month after rising 1.0% in June. In the 12 months through July, the PPI jumped 7.8%, a record high since the measure was introduced just over a decade ago.

Separately, data showed the number of Americans filing claims for unemployment benefits fell again last week as the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic continued.

Investors remain vigilant for any signs of inflation running too hot since it could potentially spur the Federal Reserve to pull forward its timing on tapering of asset purchases as well as interest rate hikes.

"The U.S. dollar held near the top of a tight overnight range as fresh data renewed pressure on the Fed to shift away from low rate policy," said Joe Manimbo, senior market analyst at Western Union (NYSE:WU) Business Solutions in Washington.

The greenback has broadly strengthened since mid-June - hitting its highest since April 1 at 93.195 prior to Wednesday's data - when the U.S. Federal Reserve flagged that it was gearing up for earlier-than-expected rate hikes and amid evidence that the release of pent-up demand in a rebounding economy was fuelling price rises.

Thursday's data helped the greenback shake off some of the weakness from the prior session when data showed U.S. consumer price increases slowed in July, easing concerns the Federal Reserve will imminently signal a scaling back of bond purchases.

"Today's huge upside PPI surprise follows yesterday's solid but moderating CPI gains, leaving a mix that will keep inflation concerns alive even as economists will continue to expect a slowing in monthly price gains into year-end," Action Economics' Mike Englund and Kim Rupert said in a note.

Sterling fell 0.5% on the day against the broadly stronger U.S. dollar as analysts expected the Bank of England to make no moves in its monetary policy after official data showed Britain's economy grew in line with expectations in the second quarter.

Bitcoin slipped 2.6% to $44,348.59, a day after touching a near 3-month high.

Dollar rises after U.S. producer prices surge
 

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Comments (4)
James Pattison
James Pattison Aug 12, 2021 9:17AM ET
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Im still scared of inflation
Joel Schwartz
Joel Schwartz Aug 11, 2021 10:59PM ET
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I love how 200%+ the FED’s 2.5% annualized inflation target is being spun as “cooler than expected.” UH WHAT
Notvery Goodathis
Peteymcletey Aug 11, 2021 10:44PM ET
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Uhh. what? Inflation still running hot. just not nuclear joe hot
Mario tragik
Mario tragik Aug 11, 2021 10:15PM ET
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cooling inflation .... lmao.
 
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