Dollar Teeters, but Investors Take Bet on U.S. Rate Hikes

The dollar weakened in Asia on Friday, posting its biggest weekly decline in eight months. Investors rate their positions as “buy” as they bet that there will be several U.S. interest rate hikes in 2022.

  • The U.S. dollar index fell 0.07% against other currencies to 94.173, posting a 0.9% decline for the week, the largest weekly decline since May 2021.
  • The yen dropped 0.33% to 113.80 yen per dollar.
  • The Australian dollar fell 0.12% to 0.7275.
  • The New Zealand dollar fell 0.07% to 0.6855.
  • The yuan rose 0.01% to 6.3605 per dollar. Chinese data released earlier in the day showed that export figures rose 20.9% year-on-year. Imports rose 19.5% year-on-year in December. The trade balance stood at $94.46 billion.
  • The pound rose 0.15% to 1.3725 pounds per dollar. Confidence that the British economy can withstand the recent coronavirus pandemic and that the Bank of England will raise interest rates from February 2022 kept the pound in line.

U.S. interest rates are scheduled to be raised a total of four times in 2022, a move supported by Fed officials including Leil Brainard, who is taking over as vice chairman of the Federal Reserve.

Investors were waiting for month-end labor and inflation data for Australia and New Zealand to gauge the value of the two currencies.

Meanwhile, the Korean central bank has raised interest rates to 1.25%. This was announced today.

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