Yen rises vs. dollar and euro as U.S., China meeting looms

Tue Apr 4, 2017 3:23pm EDT
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By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The safe-haven yen advanced to a one-week high against the dollar and a 4-1/2-month peak versus the euro on Tuesday, as investors grew cautious about a possibly contentious meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump had vowed during his campaign to label China a currency manipulator on his first day in office.

While that has not happened, a CNBC report last week said the Trump administration was reviewing the scope of its power to penalize countries whose currencies it perceives as undervalued. The report provided no details about how that would be done.

"It's always difficult to know what components of FX the two (Trump and Xi) will focus on or what specific measure they will be looking at in order to amp up the rhetoric on currency manipulator," said Brad Bechtel, managing director FX at Jefferies in New York.

Markets also reacted to a bombing on Monday in a St. Petersburg metro and had an eye on U.S. employment data due later this week and France's presidential election later this month.

In late trading, the dollar was down 0.2 percent to 110.64 yen JPY=, after earlier sliding to a one-week low of 110.27 yen.

Economic data on Tuesday was largely positive for the dollar. The U.S. trade deficit in February narrowed more than expected to $43.6 billion, while U.S. factory orders rose 0.1 percent, increasing for a third straight month.

That should keep expectations for multiple Federal Reserve interest rate hikes this year intact.   Continued...

FILE PHOTO - Euro, Hong Kong dollar, U.S. dollar, Japanese yen, pound and Chinese 100 yuan banknotes are seen in this picture illustration, January 21, 2016.   REUTERS/Jason Lee/Illustration/File Photo