In a quiet day the USD made modest gains but ended off its highs.
North American session
The USD continued to gain ground against the EUR and JPY through the North American session, but made more marginal gains elsewhere in a largely newsless market. EUR/USD slipped around 40 pips to 1.0950 before correcting and USD/JPY gained around 30 pips to 135.20. AUD/CAD and GBP corrected from early losses versus the USD as equities stabilized after early losses. EUR/GBP fell below .87.
The only data was the NFIB survey. The index of 89.0 from 90.1 is the weakest since December 2012 and suggests banking risks are causing concern. Price pressures appear to be easing but the labor market still looks tight. Comments from the Fed’s Jefferson and Williams were both on the hawkish side, playing down the significance of credit tightening in Jefferson’s case, and saying no easing was likely to be needed this year in William’s case.
European morning session
The USD gained a little ground against the EUR through a quiet European morning session, but was otherwise little changed. EUR/USD fell from 1.10 to 1.0980, and the EUR consequently slipped lower on the crosses as well. EUR/GBP traded below 0.87 for the first time since December.
There wasn’t any data of any real note. The UK Halifax house price index showed its lowest y/y growth since 2019, but was still marginally positive. The French current account showed a surplus of EUR1.4bn in March, the first surplus since January 2020, with the trade deficit also its lowest for a year at EUR8.0bn.
EUR/NOK was slightly firmer. Central bank Governor Ida Wolden Bache told a hearing in parliament on Tuesday that Norway's floating currency exchange rate allows the country to set policy interest rates at levels that are the most appropriate for the economic outlook, suggesting that intervention to prevent NOK weakness was unlikely.