On Wednesday, the Greenback recovered slightly from 15-month lows, thanks to a pause in selling as traders are awaiting key economic events this week, notably Friday's U.S. non-farm payrolls report. Meanwhile, the Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing gauge for July stood at 56.3, from a reading of 57.8 the previous month, which was the highest level since August 2014. A reading above 50 in the ISM index refers to the expansion of the U.S. manufacturing sector.
Stateside, the Commerce Department said yesterday that consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, rose as much as 0.1% in June after an upwardly revised 0.2% gain in May, referring to a moderate pace of the U.S. consumption growth in the third quarter.
On the economic calendar for Wednesday, markets are awaiting MBA Mortgage Applications data, which tracks new home mortgages, and offers a comprehensive analysis of mortgage application activity. Also, traders are awaiting comments by Cleveland Fed chief Loretta Mester and San Francisco Fed President John Williams due later in the session.
The euro settled at $1.1806 after touching a 2-1/2-year peak of $1.1846 set yesterday, as traders preferred to stay away from the risks surrounding the Euro-zone. Meanwhile, Eurozone unemployment rate fell to 9.1% in June, its lowest since February 2009.
An better than expected manufacturing PMI helped the pound hold it’s ground. The reading increased to 55.1 from 54.2, higher than the expected 54.4 figure. On the data front, we have the construction PMI due next with a decrease from 54.8 to 54.3 expected. However, a stronger than expected result could mean more strength for the sterling ahead of the Bank of England decision later in the week.
The Japanese currency had mixed results as it reacted to events as opposed to settling for any specific direction. The Bank of Japan core CPI held firm at 0.3% instead of falling to the projected 0.2%. Today on the tap, we have the consumer confidence index due with an improvement from 43.3 to 43.5 eyed.
Gold prices declined on Wednesday as the Greenback settled and due to profit taking by traders after disappointing US data pushed prices to a seven-week high in the previous session. US gold futures for December delivery slipped 0.6% to settle at $1,271.70, while Spot gold fell as much as 0.3%, to $1,264.88.
Earlier today, Oil prices edged down by 1%, weighted down by increasing U.S. fuel inventories pulling U.S. crude back below $50 per barrel. The American Petroleum Institute's (API) said that U.S. crude stocks surged by 1.8 million barrels in the week ending 28th July to 488.8 million, such figures dashing hopes that recent stockpiles draws were a sign of a tightening U.S. oil market.
Brent crude, the international oil benchmark, fell as much as 1% or 47 cents to settle at $51.31 per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) settled at $48.69.
Meanwhile, markets are awaiting the U.S. Energy Information Administration storage data, which will be published later on today.
The most important economic events:
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