Except the New Zealand dollar, most other major currencies traded quietly in the Asian session on Friday as investors await U.S. non-farm payrolls data due later in the global day.
The NZ dollar tumbled in the Asian session as traders sold the currency in reaction to the International Monetary Fund’s warning of lower economic growth in New Zealand. The kiwi fell to a fresh 19-year low against the Aussie, 2- 1/2 -month low against the US dollar, 2-day low against the yen and a 10 – 1/2 -month low against the euro.
But other major currencies remained silent despite a rise in Asian stocks.
Asian stocks advanced, following a positive lead from Wall Street where stocks rose sharply overnight on the back of encouraging economic data. A decline in crude oil prices also contributed to the buoyant mood across the region.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 index gained 1%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng advanced 1.2%, China’s Shangai Composite index soared 1.3%, South Korea’s Kospi climbed 1.7%, New Zealand’s NZX 50 index rose 0.6%, Australia’s S&P 200 index advanced 1.2% and the All Ordinaries index was 1.1% higher.
The U.S. dollar is currently trading at 82.38 against the yen, 1.3964 against the euro, 0.9318 against the franc, 1.6282 against the pound, 0.9729 against the Canadian dollar, 1.0138 against the Australian dollar and 0.7380 against the NZ dollar.
There are no major economic reports due in the European session today.
The U.S. Labor Department is scheduled to release its monthly non-farm payroll report at 8:30 am ET. Economists expect non-farm payrolls for February to increase by 180,000, but they expect the unemployment rate to tick up to 9.1 percent.
The U.S. Commerce Department is due to release its report on factory goods orders for January at 10 am ET.