US dollar firms up on debt limit talks


The US dollar firmed up in late trading on Wednesday as the country’s leaders expressed optimism over debt limit negotiations.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, increased 0.31 percent at $102.8819 in late trading.

In late New York trading, the euro was down to $1.0838 from $1.0868 in the previous session, and the British pound decreased to $1.2484 from $1.2486 in the previous session.

The Australian dollar was unchanged at close to $0.6659 from $0.6659.

One US dollar bought 137.5880 Japanese yen, higher than the 136.3070 yen of the previous session. The US dollar rose to 0.8986 Swiss francs from 0.8959 francs and fell to 1.3450 Canadian dollars from 1.3469 Canadian dollars. The US dollar increased to 10.4527 Swedish Krona from 10.4029 Krona.

On Wednesday, US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said he does not think the US will default on its debt as tense negotiations over the debt ceiling continue.

US President Joe Biden echoed McCarthy’s comments later in remarks from the White House that “We’re going to come together because there is no alternative.”

The US 2-year note yield rate rose over 4.10 percent on Wednesday, while the 10-year bond yield rate stayed over 3.50 percent, lending support to the U.S. dollar.

The US Census Bureau reported Wednesday that U.S. housing starts were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.401 million units in April, lower than economists’ expectation of 1.405 million units but higher than 1.371 million units in March.

Building permits were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.416 million units in April, lower than economists’ expectation of 1.430 million units. The reading for March had been revised from 1.413 million units to 1.437 million units.

Moreover, Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, reported Wednesday that the Eurozone’s harmonized index of consumer prices increased by 7.0 percent in April year on year, higher than the 6.9 percent growth in March. It’s in line with economists’ expectations.


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