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Dollar Up, China’s Economic Growth Slows Down While New Zealand Inflation Picks Up

Forex Oct 18, 2021 12:28AM ET
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© Reuters.

By Gina Lee

Investing.com – The dollar was up on Monday morning in Asia. Inflation data from New Zealand was higher than expected while data from China showed slower-than-expected economic growth. Hawkish comments from the Bank of England (BOE) governor also placed the possibility of interest rate hikes on investors’ radars.

The U.S. Dollar Index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies edged up 0.18% to 94.105 by 12:19 AM ET (4:19 AM GMT).

The USD/JPY pair edged up 0.12% to 114.36.

The AUD/USD pair was down 0.26% to 0.7404. The NZD/USD pair inched up 0.05% to 0.7067. New Zealand’s consumer price index grew a higher-than-expected 4.9% year-on-year and 2.2% quarter-on-quarter in the third quarter.

The USD/CNY pair inched up 0.05% to 6.4369. The yuan was firm in offshore trade, with Chinese data released earlier in the day said that the GDP grew 0.2% quarter-on-quarter and 4.9% year-on-year in the third quarter of 2021. Industrial production grew 3.1% year-on-year, retail sales grew 4.4% year-on-year in September and the unemployment rate was at 4.9%.

The GBP/USD pair edged down 0.12% to 1.3733.

The dollar fell around 0.6% from last week's 2021 highs, as investors increasingly bet that inflationary pressures could mean earlier-than-expected interest rate hikes from the U.S. Federal Reserve but other central banks could be aggressive over the tightening cycle.

BOE Governor Andrew Bailey said on Sunday that surging energy prices would prolong a pulse in inflation and policymakers "will have to act" if they see risks.

"The rest of the world is probably outpacing the U.S. in inflation, for now, and it puts more pressure on those central banks than the U.S. one," Westpac currency analyst Imre Speizer told Reuters.

In New Zealand, the surprise leap in the CPI would only reinforce the need for the Reserve Bank of New Zealand to keep its interest rate hike trajectory unchanged, he added.

In cryptocurrencies, bitcoin remained just below its record high of $64,895 and last bought $62,233. Bitcoin is viewed as an inflation hedge and hopes are high that the U.S. will approve a futures-based exchange-traded fund that would funnel cash into the sector.

Dollar Up, China’s Economic Growth Slows Down While New Zealand Inflation Picks Up
 

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