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Forex - Dollar Hits Day’s Highs as U.S. Inflation Rises

ForexFeb 14, 2018 08:37AM ET
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© Reuters. Dollar hits day’s highs as U.S. inflation rises

Investing.com - The dollar rose to the day’s highs against a basket of the other major currencies on Wednesday after data showing that U.S. inflation rose more strongly than expected in January.

The annual rate of inflation rose to 2.1% in January and to 1.8% on a core basis the Department of Labor said.

Consumer prices rose 0.5% from a month earlier and to 0.3% on a core basis.

The inflation data had been hotly anticipated after fears over rising price pressures and thus a faster rate of interest rate increases triggered the initial selloff in global equity markets two weeks ago.

U.S. futures turned sharply lower as the inflation data rekindled fears that the Federal Reserve could raise interest rates more quickly than expected, while European markets lost their early gains.

At the same time, a separate report showed that U.S. retail sales fell 0.3% in January after a 0.4% gain in December.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.37% to 89.93 by 08:40 AM ET (13:40 GMT).

The U.S. currency attracted safe haven demand during the stock market downturn seen earlier this month, although it had fallen to a three-year low in January.

The euro fell to the day’s lows against the dollar, with EUR/USD losing 0.46% to 1.2293 after earlier rising to a one-week high of 1.2393.

The dollar remained weaker against the yen, with USD/JPY last at 107.46 after slumping to a 15-month low of 106.84 overnight as investors remained on edge ahead of the inflation numbers.

Investors tend to seek out the yen in times of market turbulence as the currency is backed by Japan's current account surplus, which offers it more resilience than currencies of deficit-running countries.

Sterling was lower against the dollar, with GBP/USD down 0.62% to 1.3802.

Forex - Dollar Hits Day’s Highs as U.S. Inflation Rises
 

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