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MW: Dollar falls in aftermath of Trump news conference light on economic detail
 
The U.S. dollar fell sharply against its major rivals on Thursday after Donald Trump, speaking in his first news conference as U.S. president elect, failed to reassure investors that the buck’s recent advance was justified.

Trump spoke widely but failed to give markets more details of his administration’s ideas for economic stimulus, trade policy, or taxation. Investors’ expectations that these plans would accelerate economic growth and stoke inflation have underpinned a rally in the dollar since the election.

A key dollar index is up nearly 3% over the past three months, reaching levels last seen in 2002.

The news conference “failed to provide the much-needed clarity on future fiscal policies,” said Lukman Otunuga, a research analyst for FXTM. “The lack of details of the president-elect’s administration’s plans for economic stimulus simply left dollar bullish investors empty-handed. It seems likely that dollar sensitivity intensifies this month as the renewed Trump uncertainty keeps investors on edge.”


The ICE Dollar Index DXY, -0.86% a measure of the greenback against a basket of six rivals, dropped 0.9% to 100.83, trading near its lows of the session. The WSJ Dollar Index BUXX, -0.78% a measure of the U.S. unit against a wider basket of major currencies, was down 0.7% at 91.75.

While the dollar has been in an uptrend of late, the rally has shown signs of stalling. The index is down 1.4% thus far this week.

Opinion: Beware of the ‘Trump dump’ in stocks as rally peters out

The lack of clarity prompted further selling of the dollar against its major rivals following sharp falls on Wednesday. Dollar-yen USDJPY, -1.02% fell 0.9% to ¥114.02, a one-month low, from ¥115.09 late Wednesday in New York.

The euro EURUSD, +0.7655% was changing hands at $1.0675 compared with $1.0587 late Wednesday, a move of 0.8%. The pound GBPUSD, +0.5732% traded at $1.2295 from $1.2193.

Read: How Trump’s presser threatened to wreck his own stock-market rally

The dollar’s postelection rally is “over for now,” said Takuya Kanda, senior researcher of the Gaitame.com Research Institute, adding that he expects downside pressure on the dollar to continue ahead of Trump’s inauguration next week.

“Dollar selling is more likely” as investors who bought the dollar ahead of Trump’s news conference learned their lesson as the currency slid amid no details on his economic policy, Kanda said.

But Trump’s inauguration speech will be scripted and could touch on matters most pertinent to global currency and bond markets, economists said.

Read: Blog recap of Trump press conference

Market watchers in Tokyo expressed concerns about Trump’s mentioning of Japan in the context of trade imbalances, another factor that fed into the yen’s strength Thursday.

SMBC Nikko FX strategist Makoto Noji said investors need to watch the potential for Trump embarking on a major offensive against Japan’s trade surplus with the U.S. A ratcheting-up of rhetoric is plausible, he added.

“We shouldn’t underestimate Trump’s mentioning of Japan” along with China and Mexico, said Noji.

Source