Greenback Hits Three-Yr Low After Mnuchin Says Weak point Helps Commerce

"Trump did say he wanted a stronger dollar, but at the same time made no intention of changing his stance towards pursuing USA interest through trade policies", said Junichi Ishikawa, senior FX strategist at IG Securities in Tokyo.

US President Donald Trump said he ultimately wants the dollar to be strong, lifting the greenback and contradicting comments made by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin a day earlier. A weaker currency can be beneficial for exports and trade, which has been one of the key causes of the Trump administration.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move.

While Mr Mnuchin said that he supported free and floating currencies, the U.S. dollar continued to shed value through most of the overnight session until President Trump waded in. Instead, the USA dollar has suddenly plunged to a 3-year low and its biggest 1-day drop in 10 months simply because Trump wants it that way. But Mnuchin could well have the ultimate satisfaction from seeing his analysis play out in the context of a strong US economy this year.

Trump's comment on the dollar was unusual in that presidents do not usually talk about the currency, but Trump was also unusual in that he spoke about dollar weakness a year ago, just several days before he was inaugurated.

U.S. Treasury secretaries have been repeating that the strong dollar is in U.S. national interests since the late 1990s, when Robert Rubin held the job in the Clinton administration.

President Trump denies making s***hole comments, says he's 'not a racist'
Dick Durbin of IL , the only Democrat at Thursday's meeting, said Trump had indeed said what he was reported to have said. He did not address the reports that he disparaged African nations and ignored questions about the comments from reporters.

The U.S. Treasury hasn't intervened in currency markets since 2011, when then-Secretary Timothy Geithner acted in concert with the Group of Seven to sell the yen after it surged in wake of Japan's tragic quake and tsunami in March of that year.

The kiwi dropped to 73.32 USA cents as at 8.25am in Wellington from 73.72 cents immediately before Trump's comments, and down from 73.82 cents yesterday. Mnuchin's comments were very matter-of-fact.

Following the president's comments, the dollar pared losses against major currencies.

That came as Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross defended this week's stinging United States tariffs on solar panels and warned of further retaliation against nations Washington felt had broken the rules, ramping up fears of a possible global trade war.

The euro was 0.1 percent lower at $1.2389, pulling back from $1.2538, its highest since December 2014 scaled on Thursday. Of the 88 companies in the index that have posted results, 78.4 percent have topped expectations, while 72 percent had done so on average in the previous four quarters. GE also forecast more weakness at its power business this year, a unit that produced 60 percent of profits as recently as 2016. S. stocks relinquished gains after U. S.

Stephen Innes, head of Asia-Pacific trading at OANDA, tipped the greenback to continue falling owing to Trump's desire to help U.S. manufacturers and exporters as part of his America First policy. And right now the USA dollar is largely falling in response to its relative economic pace of growth falling short of many global counterparts, notably Western European economies.


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