USD/INR – The Indian rupee opened flat against the U.S. dollar even though the dollar index continued to climb. The rupee opened at 71.1725 versus the previous close of 71.1650. The dollar index rose for the eighth straight day on Monday, advancing 0.4% to its highest since mid-December. In the current winning run, the dollar index has added about 1.5% amid worries over Europe’s economy and uncertainty over U.S.-China trade talks. On the ongoing trade negotiations, it was reported on Monday that advisors to the U.S. President have informally discussed holding a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Donald Trump’s club in Florida. The report comes on the heel of comments by Trump last week that he has no plans to meet his Chinese counterpart.
EUR/USD – The single currency was off slightly at $1.1280 in early Asian trade, having lost nearly half a percent on Monday. EUR/USD is in increasing danger of falling back to last year’s low as persistent downside surprises in data from major euro zone economies – such as Germany and Italy – weigh on the euro as markets doubt the ECB can start to normalize monetary policy anytime soon. Depressed euro zone rates leave the dollar’s yield advantage intact, making U.S. investments potentially more attractive for investors. Politics is also hurting the euro. Italian-French political tensions are heating up after Italy’s Deputy PM DiMaio met with French protesters, prompting Paris to recall its ambassador from Rome. Political tensions between the two nations will heighten uncertainty in May’s European Parliament elections and should keep euro bulls at bay. Potential EU-U.S. trade issues are also weighing on EUR/USD.
GBP/USD – Sterling was lower at $1.2870, tumbling 0.75% in the previous session. Sterling weakened on Monday after data showed that Britain’s economy last year grew at its slowest since 2012, with Brexit uncertainty hitting investment and the slowdown accelerating at the end of 2018. The October-to-December quarterly numbers followed other data in recent weeks that painted a picture of a UK economy slowing into 2019, as businesses and consumers grow increasingly nervous about Britain’s departure from the European Union. The British parliament is set to hold a debate on Brexit on Feb. 14 where Prime Minister Theresa May is seeking changes to her deal with Brussels after it was rejected by a record majority in parliament last month.
USD/JPY – The dollar has gained on the yen. It was steady against the yen at 110.50. Japanese exporters look to be in no rush to sell USD/JPY even with the pair back above 110.00. Granted, offers from this bloc will be seen on the way up, but much of their hedging for the fiscal year ending in March looks to be done, and the sense in the market is that they are not in any rush to aggressively hedge receivables for the new fiscal year. This is especially so given continued concern over U.S.-China trade frictions and auto trade issues between the U.S. and Europe and Japan. Japanese exporters also want to assume at least 110.00 in budgets for the coming fiscal year.
Currency Range for Today
Important data releases today
|5:30 PM||INR||CPI (YoY) (Jan)||2.48%||2.19%|
|5:30 PM||INR||Cumulative Industrial Production (Dec)||–||5.00%|
|5:30 PM||INR||Industrial Production (YoY) (Dec)||2.0%||0.5%|
|5:30 PM||INR||Manufacturing Output (MoM) (Dec)||–||-0.4%|