The Australian dollar that strengthened against its major rivals at the beginning of Wednesday’s Asian session pared some of its gains shortly, despite a rally in most of Asia-pacific stocks. The aussie thus moved off from an 8-day high against the euro and a 6-day high against the yen.
The Australian stock market is trading notably higher today with the overnight positive close on Wall Street as well as higher commodities and metal prices triggering some strong buying across the board.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index, which rose to 4,570.7 in early trades, is currently up 40.9 points or 0.9% at 4,546. The broader All Ordinaries index is trading at 4,563, up 42.3 points or 0.9% over its previous close.
In economic news, consumer confidence in Australia declined in February for the third time in four months, according to survey results published today by Westpac Bank and the Melbourne Institute. The group’s consumer sentiment index declined 2.6 percent to a reading of 117 points.
At the same time, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported today that the number of home loans extended in Australia in December declined by a seasonally adjusted 5.5 percent in December.
The Australian dollar that advanced to a 6-day high of 79.14 against the Japanese yen around 7:30 pm ET Tuesday declined to 78.45 around 10:30 pm ET. The aussie-yen pair closed yesterday’s deals at 78.83.
An index measuring domestic corporate goods prices in Japan was up 0.3 percent in January compared to the previous month, the Bank of Japan said today. That was higher than analyst expectations for a 0.1 percent increase following the revised flat reading in December. On an annual basis, the corporate goods price index was down 2.1 percent.
Core machinery orders in Japan spiked 20.1 percent in January compared to the previous month, the Cabinet Office said today. That was sharply higher than analyst expectations for an 8.0 percent monthly gain following the record low 11.3 percent contraction in November. On an annual basis, orders were down 1.5 percent.
The Australian dollar that challenged yesterday’s 5-day high of 0.88 against the US dollar earlier in the session retreated to as low as 0.8746 around 10:30 pm ET Tuesday. The aussie-buck pair is presently worth 0.8753, compared to 0.8789 hit late New York Tuesday.
The Australian dollar that reached a 2-day low of 1.2615 against the NZ dollar at 6:40 pm ET moved on holding pattern thereafter. Currently, the aussie-kiwi pair is trading at 1.2624, compared to 1.2632 hit late New York Tuesday.
The Australian dollar declined after hitting an 8-day high of 1.5681 against the common unit of Europe in early Asian trading on Wednesday. The aussie is currently trading lower at 1.5737, compared to yesterday’s close of 1.5707.
Traders are now looking forward to the European session, in which, the French current account and industrial production reports-both for the month of December are expected.
From the U.S., the Department of Commerce will release its trade balance report for December at 8:30 AM ET.
Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Charles Plosser is scheduled to deliver a speech on financial crisis in Philadelphia at 12:45 PM ET.
At 2:00 pm ET, the US monthly budget statement for January will be made public.