Dollar falls versus euro as U.S. jobs trail forecast

The dollar declined to the lowest level in more than a week against the euro after U.S. employers added fewer jobs in March than forecast, fueling speculation growth in the world’s biggest economy is slowing.

The greenback fell for a third day versus the shared currency on bets the payrolls data will stiffen the Federal Reserve’s determination to keep buying bonds to spur growth. The yen touched the weakest level since 2009 versus the greenback a day after the Bank of Japan outstripped forecasts and announced unprecedented economic stimulus measures.

“The payroll data is obviously weaker than expected,” Marc Chandler, New York-based global head of currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., said in a telephone interview. “It reinforces the idea the Fed has the pedal to the metal with its easing. We’ll probably see some more weak economic data.”

The dollar depreciated 0.6% to $1.3018 per euro at 2:20 p.m. in New York. The greenback fell as low as $1.3040, the weakest level since March 25. It gained earlier to $1.2901, approaching its 200-day moving average at $1.2895. Moving averages, which indicate momentum, are seen by some traders as potential turning points. The dollar has weakened 1.5% versus the euro over the past five days, headed for its first weekly loss since March 15.

The U.S. currency climbed 1.2% to 97.50 yen and reached 97.52, its strongest level since August 2009. The greenback is poised to gain 3.5% this week against the yen, snapping a three-week losing streak that was the longest since September. The Japanese currency sank 1.8% to 126.84 per euro and reached 126.91, the weakest since Feb. 12.

Dollar Index

The Dollar Index declined 0.3% to 82.473 and reached 82.273, the lowest since March 25. The gauge touched 83.494 yesterday, the highest level since Aug. 2.

Canada’s dollar fell versus most of 31 major peers after the nation unexpectedly had the biggest job loss last month since 2009. Employment fell by 54,500 positions, versus a Bloomberg survey forecast for an increase of 6,500.

The loonie, as the currency is nicknamed for the image of the aquatic bird on the C$1 coin, declined 0.6% to C$1.0183 per dollar and lost as much as 1.1%, its biggest intraday drop since June 28.

Asian currencies depreciated the most this week since January as policy makers from the Philippines to Japan proposed measures that tend to weaken their exchange rates. The Bloomberg-JPMorgan Asia Dollar Index declined 0.3% since March 29, the most since the week ending Jan. 25.

South Korea’s won declined to a seven-month low against the dollar as the risk of conflict with North Korea spurred capital outflows. The currency slid 0.7% to 1,131.69 and touched 1,131.73, its weakest level since Sept. 6.

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