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Forex – Dollar Rises to Fresh 2018 Highs, Commodity Currencies Hit

© Reuters.  Dollar rises to fresh 2018 highs, commodity currencies hit© Reuters. Dollar rises to fresh 2018 highs, commodity currencies hit

Investing.com – The dollar rose to fresh four month highs against a currency basket on Tuesday, sending the euro below $1.18, while commodity linked currencies fell along with oil prices ahead of an announcement on the future of the Iran nuclear deal.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, climbed 0.31% to 92.89 by 05:02 AM ET (09:02 AM GMT), the highest level since late December.

Rising U.S. Treasury yields and broadly solid economic data have boosted the dollar in recent weeks, underlining expectations for a steady pace of interest rate increases by the Federal Reserve this year.

The central bank has projected two more increases for the year, but some investors expect three more.

Strength in the dollar pressured the euro, with EUR/USD down 0.28% to a four month low of 1.1889.

The euro failed to find much support after data showing that German industrial output rose more than expected in March. The report helped ease concerns that the euro area’s largest economy is facing headwinds from rising protectionism.

Data on Monday had shown that German industrial orders dropped for a third month running in March.

A recent soft patch of economic data has given rise to speculation that the European Central Bank may not be able to end its asset purchasing stimulus program in September, as some investors had expected.

Sterling was also weaker, with GBP/USD sliding 0.34% to 1.3511, closing in on last Friday’s four month lows of 1.3485.

The dollar was little changed against the traditional safe haven yen, with USD/JPY last at 109.02, not far from an overnight high of 109.13.

The commodity linked currencies were pressured lower as oil prices fell sharply ahead of an announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump later in the day about the future of an international nuclear agreement with Iran, which he has repeatedly threatened to withdraw from.

The Canadian dollar fell to almost two-month lows, with USD/CAD advancing 0.68% to 1.2966.

The Australian dollar plumbed fresh eleven month lows, with AUD/USD down 0.6% to 0.7471, while the New Zealand dollar was at lows not seen since December, with NZD/USD losing 0.38% to trade at 0.6987.

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