By Kosaku Narioka
The dollar stabilized on Thursday in Asia after several relatively upbeat U.S. economic indicators pushed the currency higher overnight.
But in otherwise quiet trading on what is Thanksgiving Day in the U.S., the Australian dollar fell following dismal business investment data.
Several U.S. economic indicators released on Wednesday, which were mostly positive, underscored expectations that the U.S. central bank will start raising rates in December and lifted the U.S. currency against the euro and the yen.
"A December rate increase has been factored in. The focus is on when would be the next and how fast they were going to raise rates subsequently," said Osao Iizuka, head of FX trading at Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank. "And they wouldn't be in a hurry."
The dollar was at Y122.60 as of 0430 GMT, compared to Y122.70 late Wednesday in New York, according to EBS. The euro was at $1.0624, compared to $1.0625 late in New York.
The market's near-term focus is on the European Central Bank's policy meeting on Dec. 3. Mr. Iizuka said because the euro has factored in the prospect of the ECB's additional easing steps next week, the pair could rise if the ECB underwhelms market participants.
The ECB has signaled its readiness to expand its bond purchase program to combat weak inflation. The euro has lost 4% against the dollar over the past month.
In Australia, the Australian dollar fell to $0.7244 from $0.7251 following data showing poor business investment in the country. Australian firms scaled back investment spending by 9.2% in the third quarter from the second, a much steeper drop than the 2.9% fall expected. In the year through September, total new capital expenditure fell by 20.0%.
No major events are scheduled for the rest of the day.
Interbank Foreign Exchange Rates At 22:50 EST / 0350 GMT
Latest Previous %Chg Daily Daily %Chg
Dollar Rates Close High Low 12/31
USD/JPY Japan 122.59-60 122.71-72 -0.10 122.76 122.57 +2.40
EUR/USD Euro 1.0621-24 1.0624-27 -0.03 1.0629 1.0616 -12.20
GBP/USD U.K. 1.5128-30 1.5127-29 +0.01 1.5131 1.5114 -2.89
USD/CHF Switzerland 1.0221-25 1.0216-20 +0.05 1.0233 1.0210 +2.82
USD/CAD Canada 1.3286-91 1.3285-90 +0.01 1.3307 1.3284 +14.34
AUD/USD Australia 0.7240-44 0.7250-54 -0.14 0.7260 0.7217 -11.37
NZD/USD New Zealand 0.6589-95 0.6574-80 +0.23 0.6597 0.6564 -15.43
EUR/JPY Japan 130.22-26 130.34-38 -0.09 130.42 130.16 -10.14
Source: ICAP PLC
Write to Kosaku Narioka at email@example.com