In Asian trading on Thursday, the Australian dollar climbed to multi-day highs against most major currencies on the back of a rise in most Asian stocks.
Most Asian stocks are trading higher today with investors tracking cues from Wall Street where stocks ended with strong gains overnight on the back of a rally in commodity prices.
Australia’s benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index is currently up 67.60 points or 1.4 percent at 4,761.30 and the broader All Ordinaries index is trading at 4,381.50, up 66.20 points or 1.4 percent over its previous close.
The Australian dollar rose to a 6-day high of 1.0683 against the U.S. dollar in the Asian session. The next upside target level for the aussie is seen at 1.072. The aussie-greenback pair closed yesterday’s trading at 1.0629.
During Asian deals, the Australian dollar climbed to an 8-day high of 87.15 against the Japanese yen. This may be compared to yesterday’s close of 86.88. On the upside, 88.0 is seen as the next target level for the Australian dollar.
Japan’s gross domestic product was down an annualized 0.9 percent in the first quarter of 2011 compared to the previous three months, the Cabinet Office said in a preliminary report, tipping the country back into a technical recession following the devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami.
The first quarter reading was even worse than analyst expectations for a 0.5 percent contraction following the downwardly revised 0.8 percent fall in the fourth quarter of 2010. On an annual basis, Japan’s GDP plunged 3.7 percent in the first quarter – well shy of forecasts for a 2.0 percent fall following the downwardly revised 3.0 percent decline in the previous three months.
The Australian dollar strengthened to 1.0341 against the Canadian dollar in Asian deals. If the aussie gains further, it may likely target the 1.036 level. At yesterday’s close, the aussie-loonie pair was quoted at 1.0317.
In the Asian session, the Australian dollar edged up to a 2-day high of 1.3394 against the euro, compared to 1.3408 hit late New York Wednesday. The next upside target level for the aussie is seen at 1.336.
Looking ahead, Japan’s revised industrial production report for March is due at 12:30 am ET.
In the European session, U.K. retail sales for April and the Swiss ZEW economic sentiment index for May are slated for release.
The U.S. weekly jobless claims for the week ended May 14, existing home sales and leading indicators for April are expected in the New York morning session.