December 27, 2018 / 8:43 AM / 8 months ago

RPT-FOREX-Aussie leads commodity FX lower on trade tensions; dlr slips

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* Graphic: World FX rates in 2018

By Saikat Chatterjee

LONDON, Dec 27 (Reuters) - The Australian dollar led commodity-linked currencies lower on Thursday on concerns about a fresh chapter of trade tensions between the United States and China, though broader sentiment remained positive after an overnight rally in global stocks.

In a buying frenzy as spectacular as the recent rout, U.S. stocks soared with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rocketing more than 1,000 points for the first time on Wednesday, sending global stocks higher.

While that lifted other risky assets such as commodities, concerns that the world’s two biggest economies may be opening a new flank of their ongoing trade dispute weighed on sentiment in holiday-thinned trade.

Reuters reported on Thursday that the Trump administration is considering an executive order in the new year to declare a national emergency that would bar U.S. companies from using Huawei and ZTE products.

“The oil price bounce pushed commodity currencies higher across the board but the latest Huawei news is a bit of a dampener on sentiment in these thin markets,” said Alvin Tan, a currency strategist at Societe Generale in London.

The Australian dollar, often considered a gauge of global risk appetite and highly correlated to global commodities, was down 0.26 percent at 70.51 cents. The Norwegian crown and the New Zealand dollar were also down a quarter of a percent each.

Broadly, the dollar failed to capitalize on a eight-day high hit in the previous session on the back of firmer U.S. Treasury yields with the greenback broadly weaker against a basket of its rivals in early London trading.

The dollar index, a gauge of its value versus six major peers, slipped 0.2 percent to 96.82, after gaining 0.5 percent on Wednesday.

The greenback’s losses was the most visible against the euro with the single currency gaining 0.3 percent at $1.1385.

It has gained 0.6 percent so far this month but is still set for an annual decline of more than 5 percent on concerns of a dovish European Central Bank. (Reporting by Saikat Chatterjee; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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