US equities were led lower by string of mixed economic news however managed to regain composure after broad losses earlier in the session. The broader S&P index finished the day up 4.45 pts or .41 percent. Economic news from the US included Factory orders which grew 1.2 percent in April against a previous rise of 1.3 percent, economists had predicted stronger growth of 1.8 percent. ADP employment data recording growth of 55,000 in April however failed to meet the 70,000 new jobs expected. The ADP employment indicator is seen as a precursor for Friday’s Non-farm Payrolls which are expected to show the US economy created 500,000 new jobs in April. New claims for unemployment benefits was a fraction below estimates to record 453,000 for the week ending May 29.
The US Dollar index which measures the dollar's value relative to six major foreign currencies climbed .45 pts. to finish the day at 87.21. The Euro was led lower against the greenback falling back to the four year low mark. At the time of writing the Euro is buying 1.2162.
The Aussie dollar traded in a broad 160 pip range coinciding with movements in the Euro and US equity markets. The Aussie retreated from highs of 85.25 US cents falling through two big figures to lows of 83.6 US cents. At the time of writing the local unit has clawed back some ground to buy 84.3 US.
In the absence of economic data the local unit is likely to be governed by equities movements. Drawing closer to the US session local currency movements will be contingent on greenback demand prior to the non-farms tonight. This is a big figure out tonight in the US, with a less than convincing result is likely to induce another round of conjecture surrounding the US’s economic ability to get back on the straight and narrow. I’ll be watching closely to see how these figures are interpreted by investors; a positive figure may re-ignite the interest rate debate in the States – thus giving the US dollar a leg up. Yesterday, Kansas City Fed Reserve President Thomas Hoenig called for a tightening of monetary policy in the US advocating a rate hike by the end of summer.