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FOREX-Dollar licks wounds after bruising U.S. jobs report

05/10/2021 03:52
FOREX-Dollar licks wounds after bruising U.S. jobs report

Graphic: World FX rates https://tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E

By Saikat Chatterjee

- The U.S. dollar nursed losses near 2-1/2 month lows on Monday as a disappointing U.S. employment report prompted investors to unwind their growing long positions in the greenback.

The United States created a little more than a quarter of the jobs that economists had forecast last month and the unemployment rate unexpectedly ticked higher, casting doubts that the Fed would consider advancing the time line of tightening policy in the coming months. nL1N2MT2XD

The dollar index =USD, which measures the greenback against six rivals, stood at 90.305, up 0.2% on the day, after dipping as low as 90.128 for the first time since Feb. 26 earlier in the session.

"The more erratic the recovery on the U.S. labour market, the longer the Fed will take to consider rate steps," Commerzbank strategists said in a note

However, the dollar's losses were broadly cushioned thanks to firmer U.S. Treasury yields US10YT=RR, which were up nearly 2 bps in early London trading at 1.60%

The British pound GBP=D3 was the biggest gainer among the most-traded currencies, rallying 0.5% to $1.4067 the highest since Feb. 25, despite Scotland's leader saying another referendum on independence was inevitable after her party's resounding election victory.

Such a referendum requires the backing of the UK government in London and Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ruled out holding another vote, saying the country faced more pressing challenges such as the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

The euro EUR=EBS eased 0.1% to $1.2142, earlier touching the highest since Feb. 26 at $1.2177.

"The unexpected slow recovery in the U.S. labour market reinforces the FOMC's patient approach to monetary policy," while "the improving global economic outlook is a medium-term weight on the USD," Commonwealth Bank of Australia strategist Kim Mundy wrote in a client note, predicting a break above $1.22 for the euro.

That view was shared by JP Morgan strategists who cut their net long dollar positions against a basket of G10 currencies, notably the euro and the Antipodean currencies. Broader positioning data also revealed a similar trend.

The Aussie dollar AUD=D3 traded close to a more-than-two-month high at $0.7847, while Canada's loonie CAD=D3 rallied to a fresh 3-1/2-year high of $1.2111.

In cryptocurrencies, ether ETH=BTSP> extended this month's record run, surging more than 5% to an unprecedented $4,148.88. The second-biggest digital token has rallied 41% so far in May.

(Reporting by Saikat Chatterjee; Editing by Gareth Jones)

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