Dollar Continues To Climb Higher
The U.S. dollar turned in a strong performance against its peers on Friday, extending recent climb, after data showed a bigger than expected increase in job growth in the month of February.
According to the report released by the Labor Department Friday morning, non-farm payroll employment jumped by 379,000 jobs in February after climbing by an upwardly revised 166,000 jobs in January. Economists had expected employment to increase by 182,000 jobs compared to the uptick of 49,000 jobs originally reported for January.
The data also showed the unemployment rate edged down to 6.2% in February from 6.3% a month earlier.
The Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s comments on Thursday that he expects some inflationary pressures in the time ahead contributed a bit to the dollar and bond yields’ surge.
Powell said the recent run-up in bond yields was “notable” and that “disorderly conditions in financial markets” or a broad tightening of financial conditions would provoke a policy change. But he stopped short of saying that recent market gyrations meet those tests.
The dollar index, which rose to a fresh three-month high at 92.19, gave up some gains subsequently, but it was still up 0.35% at 91.95 a little while ago.
Against the Euro, the dollar firmed up to 1.1919, gaining nearly 0.5%.
The Pound Sterling, which slid sharply, fetching $1.3779 in the European session, regained some ground as the day progressed, but was still weak at $1.3838, netting a loss of about 0.4%.
The Yen was weak at 108.38 a dollar, compared to 107.98 Thursday evening.
The Swiss franc was weaker by about 0.3% at 0.9312 a dollar. The Loonie, riding on higher crude oil prices, firmed up to C$1.2651 a dollar, from C$1.2667.