Dollar Bounces Back as All Eyes Turn to Yellen

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By Brendel Balaga

The dollar pushed higher against competing currencies on Monday, as it bounced back from losses posted on Friday’s close following the publication of weak U.S. jobs data.

USD/JPY advanced 0.66% to 107.24, up from Friday’s 30-day low of 106.48.

The U.S. Department of Labor said on last week that the U.S. economy generated a mere 38,000 jobs last month, the smallest growth in over 5 years. Economists were expecting an increase of 164,000.

April’s figures was revised to 123,000 from a previous estimate of 160,000.

The U.S. unemployment rate dropped 4.7% from 5% in April as more people lost their jobs.

Some analysts believe that the disappointing numbers made the odds of a rate hike by the Federal Reserve in the coming months less likely. It also renewed worries over a slumping global growth.

Analysts and investors are anticipating Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s speech today to see if the U.S. employment data affected the Fed’s outlook and for further clues on the central bank’s next policy moves.

EUR/USD declined 0.15% to 1.1350, giving up Friday’s three-week highs of 1.1372.

Against the pound, the dollar was stronger, with GBP/USD shedding 0.52% to trade lower at 1.4443, but was weaker against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF slipping 0.13% at 0.9747.

Both the Australian and New Zealand dollars were lower, with AUD/USD falling 0.14% at 0.7358 and the NZD/USD slumping 0.46% to 0.6926.

Elsewhere, USD/CAD edged higher, tacking on 0.08% to trade at 1.2944.

The U.S. dollar index was higher on Monday, inching 0.22% upwards at 94.11.

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