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Forex News: Dollar Mixed After Trade Agreement

Dollar Mixed After Trade Agreement

10/01/2018 - 15:00:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - The dollar is turning in a mixed performance against its major rivals Monday afternoon. Traders are breathing a sigh of relief after U.S. and Canadian officials agreed on a trade deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement shortly before a midnight deadline.

The new trade deal, called the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, will reportedly provide more market access to U.S. dairy farmers and effectively cap Canadian automobile exports to the U.S.

A joint statement by U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said the agreement will "strengthen the middle class, and create good, well-paying jobs and new opportunities for the nearly half billion people who call North America home."

Partly reflecting supply chain issues, the Institute for Supply Management released a report on Monday showing a slightly bigger than expected slowdown in the pace of growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector in the month of September.

The ISM said its purchasing managers index fell to 59.8 in September from 61.3 in August, although a reading above 50 still indicates growth in the manufacturing sector. Economists had expected the index to edge down to 60.3.

With a jump in spending on public construction largely offset by a drop in spending on private construction, the Commerce Department released a report on Monday showing construction spending in the U.S. ticked up by much less than expected in the month of August.

The Commerce Department said construction spending inched up by 0.1 percent to an annual rate of $1.319 trillion in August after rising by 0.2 percent to an upwardly revised $1.317 trillion in July. Economists had expected construction spending to climb by 0.5 percent compared to the 0.1 percent uptick originally reported for the previous month.

The dollar fell to a low of $1.1627 against the Euro Monday morning, but has since rebounded to around $1.1575.

The euro area unemployment rate dropped to the lowest since November 2008, Eurostat reported Monday. The jobless rate fell to 8.1 percent in August from 8.2 percent in July. This was the lowest since November 2008. In the same period last year, the unemployment rate was 9 percent.

Eurozone manufacturing activity grew at the weakest pace in two years in September, final data from IHS Markit showed Monday.

The factory Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 53.2, the lowest since September 2016, from 54.6 in August. The initial estimate was 53.3. Nonetheless, the sector expanded the current period of expansion to 63 months.

Germany's retail sales increased at a faster pace in August driven by higher food and non-food product turnover, figures from Destatis showed Monday. Retail sales grew by real 1.6 percent year-on-year in August, faster than the 0.9 percent expansion seen a month ago. The annual rate came in line with expectations.

The buck dropped to a low of $1.3114 against the pound sterling Monday, but has since bounced back to around $1.3040.

The UK manufacturing sector expanded at a faster pace in September as growth in output and new orders gained traction, survey data from IHS Markit and the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply showed Monday.

The manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index rose unexpectedly to 53.8 in September from 53.0 in August. The score was forecast to drop to 52.5 from August's initially estimated 52.8.

UK mortgage approvals increased to a six-month high in August, the Bank of England reported Monday. The number of mortgages approved in August rose unexpectedly to 66,440 from 65,156 in July. The expected level was 64,500.

The greenback has climbed to an 11-month high of Y113.990 against the Japanese Yen Monday, from an early low of Y113.684.

The manufacturing sector in Japan continued to expand at a steady pace in September, the latest survey from Nikkei revealed on Monday with a manufacturing PMI score of 52.5. That's unchanged from the previous month, and it remains well above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

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