The dollar touched a 15-month low yesterday, reflecting growing market doubts that the US economy can grow fast enough for the Federal Reserve to meet its interest rate target.
The “DXY” index that measures the greenback against a basket of its peers has fallen for seven straight days — its longest losing streak in more than a year. It fell as much as 0.8 per cent -yesterday to below 92, a level last plumbed in January 2015.
Although the gauge later clawed back its losses to trade at 92.83, currency strategists said the trend pointed to -further declines. The dollar has now “broken free” from its range and is “heading lower”, said Kit Juckes, FX strategist at Société Générale. “We are going to overshoot from here.”
Only four of the 32 biggest currencies in the world have failed to gain against the dollar this year, complicating the landscape for economic policy globally.
Policymakers in the eurozone and Japan are seeking to increase stimulus to raise growth levels and inflation but instead find their strengthening currencies having the opposite effect. In the US, which has started to raise rates, the dollar’s fall may increase inflationary pressures and boost growth.
The dollar’s weakness is felt most keenly in Japan. At one stage, it was worth as little as ￥105.5, a level not
seen since October 2014, thanks in
part to the Bank of Japan’s decision not to act last week on expectations of
more aggressive monetary stimulus.
The euro is also higher than the -European Central Bank would probably prefer, topping an 18-month high of $1.16 yesterday before slipping back.
This year’s dollar slide comes after a heady rise for the US currency in 2014 and 2015, with the dollar index topping the 100 mark in December in response to the Fed raising rates for the first time in nine years. The expectation of further interest rate increases fuelled bets on mounting dollar strength in 2016.
But the first four months of the year have confounded that expectation, driven by the turmoil in January and February and exacerbated by the Fed’s subsequent caution about global growth and the outlook for the US economy.
Traders now sense that the path of least resistance is for a weaker dollar, according to Marc Chandler, head of currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman. Paraphrasing Lenin, he said: “In a sword fight, if you feel mush, push. And if you feel steel, retreat. Right now dollar bears are feeling mush.”
Data last week showed US growth had fallen to its slowest pace in two years and, with the Fed prepared to contemplate only two rate rises this year, the market is pricing in only a 16 per cent probability that the first of those will come in June.
Bets on renewed dollar strength are now at their lowest since June 2014, according to derivatives data from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
虽然该指数后来收复部分失地，回升至92.83，但外汇策略师表示，从趋势来看，还会出现进一步下跌。美元如今已经“跌破”区间，正“走向更低”，法国兴业银行(Société Générale)外汇策略师基特?朱克斯(Kit Juckes)说，“我们将从目前水平过冲。”
受美元疲软影响最大的莫过于日本。美元兑日元汇率一度跌至1美元兑105.5日元，创2014年10月以来新低，部分原因是日本央行(Bank of Japan)上周没有按照外界的预期出台更激进的货币刺激措施。
布朗兄弟哈里曼(Brown Brothers Harriman)的外汇策略主管马克?钱德勒(Marc Chandler)认为，交易员们如今的感觉是，最小阻力路径是美元走弱。套用列宁的话，他说：“在一场持剑对决中，如果你感到胆怯，要前进。如果你觉得有信心，要撤退。眼下美元空头感到胆怯。”
芝加哥商品交易所(Chicago Mercantile Exchange)的衍生品数据显示，对美元再次走强的押注如今处于自2014年6月以来的最低水平。