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Dollar plumbs nine-day low, Asian shares rise after Yellen

News Date: 30/3/2016 02:27:26
 
Dollar fell on Wednesday, adding to its massive losses yesterday after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said the bank would proceed "cautiously" on tightening monetary policy and raising interest rates due to the global risks still besieging the American economy, all but ending any expectations of a hike next month.

The dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency's performance against a basket of major currencies, fell 0.14% to a nine-day trough at 95.03, after registering its biggest daily loss in two weeks yesterday, as traders unwound their buy positions rapidly and bears jumped to sell the greenback. The yen rose 0.30% against its American rival today to 112.38.

Asian shares gained ground as well, cheered by Fed's dovish tone, with China's Shanghai index surging nearly two percentage points, while Australian shares advanced 0.20%. Japan's Nikkei was a lone loser however, hurt by the yen's strength, which lessens the competitiveness of Japanese exports abroad; the index was last down 1.31%.

Wall Street cheered Yellen's speech as well, with NASDAQ leading the winners with a 1.67% gain, or 79 points to 4,846. Both S&P 500 and Dow Jones rose to 2016-highs, with the first adding 17 points, or 0.88% to end at 2,055, and the second advancing 97 points, or 0.57% to close at 17,633.

Investors wait for a basket of U.S. data later today, with crude inventories expected to rise yet again, by 3.1 million barrels last week, adding to the previous week's massive 9.4M addition, which would be quite negative for oil prices.

A survey tracking private sector employment is forecast to show an addition of 195 thousand jobs in March, compared to February's 214K rise, which would still be positive for the world's largest economy.

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