The U.S. dollar rose against the yen on Thursday, holding near six-month highs after fresh economic data reconfirmed expectations for two more interest rate hikes before the end of the year. Reports out on Wednesday showed that U.S. producer prices were higher in June, seeing the biggest annual increase in 6 ½ years. The yen also faced pressure from monetary policy divergence between the Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan and the distance between the BOJ’s 2 percent inflation target and the current inflation levels.
The dollar broke through the 112-barrier against the yen for the first time since January 10th on Wednesday. The greenback spiked as much as 1.3 percent on Wednesday to a high of 112.175 yen. The pair’s movement came as a surprise to traders who were previously banking on the yen as a safe haven amidst continuing trade tensions between the United States and China. As of 10:00 a.m. HK/SIN, the dollar was trading 0.21 percent higher to 112.24.
The euro was trading relatively flat on Thursday morning, up a modest 0.04 percent against the dollar to $1.1674 in early trade, and up 0.09 percent against the British pound. European stocks snapped their six-day winning streak on Wednesday as trade fears spooked traders despite expectations for a strong earning season. All European sectors were in the red. Wall Street indexes followed the trend downward, though Asian shares on Thursday were broadly higher.
The Nikkei 225 was up 1.22 percent early in the trading session, and the Shanghai Composite jumped 1.11 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up 0.19 percent, the Kospi gained 0.40 percent and the ASX was 0.73 percent higher