The Dollar slipped broadly on Wednesday, hurt by a sharp fall in US Housing Starts for September and a surge in Crude Oil prices amid mounting geopolitical tensions. A weaker Housing market and a slowing US economy has enhanced the chances of Federal Reserve policy-makers cutting benchmark interest rates again from the current 4.75%, which should diminish the Dollar's appeal to global investors. Fed officials next meet on Oct. 30-31.
The Commerce Department said home construction starts fell 10.2 percent last month to its weakest level in 14 years. In the wake of the Housing Starts data, implied prospects for a quarter percentage point cut in the federal funds rate at the October Fed meeting hit 60%, from 38% overnight and 32% before Wednesday's data.
Oil jumped to yet another record high at $89 per barrel on Wednesday, and this initially weighed on the US stock market. Forex traders, meanwhile, practically ignored data showing a rise in headline US inflation last month (CPI). US Consumer Prices rose at the sharpest rate above 3 percent in four months in September. But Core prices, which exclude volatile food and energy costs, rose in line with expectations.
EurUsd was 0.3% higher at 1.4218. Analysts said traders pushed the EurUsd to 1.4230 earlier, but failed to sustain it at that level amid caution ahead of the Group of Seven finance ministers' meeting over the weekend. Analysts said: "It is possible that the G7 could issue a statement that would be cautious about Euro strength or would be aggressive about Asian currency weakness. So you see people taking off a bit of money from the table". The G7 ministers will meet in Washington over the weekend and many analysts expect currencies to be one of the major topics for discussion given the recent market volatility. US Treasury Undersecretary David McCormick said most of Friday's meeting of key global financial officials will be devoted to analyzing how to calm uneasy financial global markets.
Against the Yen, the Dollar reversed earlier gains, falling 0.54% to 116.42. The Euro was little changed against the Yen to 165.60, while GbpJpy ended up 0.16% to 237.76 after trading down to 235.84 intraday.