The US dollar had a largely positive day, as the currency made gains against most of its major partners, aside from sterling. While the UK data drove its own currency, speculation ahead of the minutes from the US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting helped the dollar to make its own gains elsewhere. While the message from last time was for interest rates to remain near zero for some time, last night’s minutes highlighted the dilemma facing the committee as to when to start increasing them as the quantitative easing programme had increased the amount of debt on the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet exponentially, and as such any increase in interest rates would increase their interest cost significantly.
Today there is a little more on the physical data front, with unemployment claims being the major release from the US this afternoon. Existing home sales are also released later today, and are expected to have picked up over the past month.
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