By Karen Brettell
NEW YORK (Reuters) – The dollar pared losses on Tuesday as Treasury yields climbed but remained lower on the day as other currencies, including sterling, were boosted by expectations of sooner-than-previously expected interest rate hikes.
The greenback reached a one-year high against a basket of other currencies last week as Treasury yields surged and as investors bet the Federal Reserve may need to increase rates to address stubbornly high inflation.
Yields appeared to stabilize on Tuesday, before grinding higher again, with benchmark 10-year yields reaching more than three-month highs.
The dollar’s move lower on Tuesday was likely exaggerated by technical factors as investors unloaded long positions.
“The movement in rates hardly explains the extent of the USD drop,” analysts at Scotiabank said in a report. “Rather, it seems USD long liquidation has snowballed into a broader clear out of positioning, triggering a technical reversal in the USD generally,” they said.
The dollar also dipped after data showed that U.S. homebuilding unexpectedly fell in September and permits dropped to a one-year low amid acute shortages of raw materials and labor, supporting expectations that economic growth slowed sharply in the third quarter.
Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin said on Tuesday that U.S. labor shortages may outlast the coronavirus pandemic and limit overall economic growth unless the country comes up with better education, health and childcare policies to boost the number of people willing and able to work.
The dollar index against a basket of other currencies was last down 0.22% on the day at 93.73, after earlier dropping to 93.50, the lowest since Sept. 28.
The euro gained 0.25% to $1.1640.
Currencies, including sterling and the New Zealand dollar, are benefiting from rising interest rate increase expectations.
The British pound rose 0.51% to $1.3798 as money markets priced in a cumulative 35 basis points in rate hikes by the end of the year.
New Zealand’s dollar jumped 1.14% to $0.7159 after data on Monday showed the fastest consumer-price inflation in more than a decade.
It earlier rose to $0.7172, the highest since June 11.
Britain and New Zealand have led a rise in short-term bond yields, with short-dated yields climbing comparatively more than in the United States.
The Aussie rose to $0.7485, the highest since July 15, shrugging off dovish minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia’s last meeting.
The yuan hit a four-month high as fears about contagion from property giant China Evergrande’s debt troubles receded and some of its peers made bond coupon payments. Policymakers said late last week the situation was controllable.
The offshore yuan strengthened to as much as 6.3674 per dollar, the strongest since June 1.
Bitcoin rose to $63,789 as the first U.S. bitcoin futures-based exchange-traded fund began trading, the highest since April when it set a record high of $64,895.
Currency bid prices at 3:00PM (1900 GMT)
Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid
Dollar index 93.7260 93.9360 -0.22% 4.162% +93.9360 +93.5010
Euro/Dollar $1.1640 $1.1611 +0.25% -4.73% +$1.1670 +$1.1609
Dollar/Yen 114.2900 114.3100 -0.03% +10.63% +114.3500 +113.9150
Euro/Yen 133.04 132.71 +0.25% +4.82% +133.1800 +132.6300
Dollar/Swiss 0.9225 0.9239 -0.14% +4.28% +0.9239 +0.9185
Sterling/Dollar $1.3798 $1.3728 +0.51% +1.00% +$1.3833 +$1.3725
Dollar/Canadian 1.2358 1.2377 -0.15% -2.94% +1.2382 +1.2312
Aussie/Dollar $0.7479 $0.7413 +0.90% -2.78% +$0.7485 +$0.7408
Euro/Swiss 1.0738 1.0723 +0.14% -0.64% +1.0740 +1.0711
Euro/Sterling 0.8433 0.8456 -0.27% -5.64% +0.8463 +0.8424
NZ $0.7159 $0.7085 +1.14% -0.22% +$0.7172 +$0.7085
Dollar/Norway 8.3500 8.4230 -0.87% -2.77% +8.4185 +8.3325
Euro/Norway 9.7206 9.7739 -0.55% -7.13% +9.7830 +9.7103
Dollar/Sweden 8.6178 8.6471 -0.26% +5.14% +8.6641 +8.5883
Euro/Sweden 10.0321 10.0581 -0.26% -0.44% +10.0619 +10.0158
(Reporting by Karen Brettell; Additional reporting by Sujata Rao in London; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and Andrea Ricci)