The Australian dollar has been slammed

Christian Petersen/Getty Images
  • The Australian dollar fell across the board on Tuesday, leading a broad-based selloff across commodity-linked currencies.
  • The AUD/USD fell to as low as .7434, leaving it at the weakest level since June 2017.
  • The economic calendar is quiet today, leaving sentiment and technicals to dictate direction.

The Australian dollar fell across the board on Tuesday, leading a broad-based selloff across commodity-linked currencies.

Here’s the damage as at 7am in Sydney.

AUD/USD 0.7452 , -0.0064 , -0.85%
AUD/JPY 81.32 , -0.70 , -0.85%
AUD/CNH 4.7437 , -0.0367 , -0.77%
AUD/EUR 0.6281 , -0.0025 , -0.40%
AUD/GBP 0.5500 , -0.0045 , -0.81%
AUD/NZD 1.0692 , -0.002 , -0.19%
AUD/CAD 0.9653 , -0.0029 , -0.30%

At .7452, the AUD/USD currently sits at the lowest level since early June last year, breaking out of the narrow trading range it had been stuck in over the past week.

It fell to as low as .7434 during the session.

From late January, it’s now shed over 8%.

AUD/USD Daily Chart

The Aussie also found few friends against the crosses, falling heavily against the Japanese yen and British pound but less so against its commodity-linked peers such as the Canadian and New Zealand dollars.

A weak Australian retail sales report for March may have contributed to its under-performance.

From a broader perspective, the Aussie’s movements mirrored the price action in crude oil futures, falling heavily in Europe before recouping losses in North American trade.

Rather than Australia’s federal budget, analysts at ANZ Bank said renewed geopolitical tensions between the United States and Iran was a key factor behind the Aussie’s slide.

“Markets were focused on headlines surrounding the US-Iran nuclear deal and associated sanctions overnight,” it says.

“The official outcome is the US will exit the deal that was struck in 2015 and reinstate sanctions [that] will target its energy, petrochemical and financial sectors.

“The end result for markets was the USD continued to strengthen [as] US treasury yields pushed 1-2 basis points higher.”

The greenback was also supported by strong US labour market and business confidence data released during the session.

“US small business optimism remained elevated and job openings surged to a new record in March,” ANZ said.

“The number of job openings is set to surpass the number of unemployed workers for the first time on record. The labour market continues to tighten.”

Turning to the day ahead, there is little on the economic events calendar to concern traders, leaving sentiment and technicals to dictate the Aussie’s direction.

“The Aussie is likely to remain under pressure today, with little data out, while geopolitical dynamics should remain in the driver’s seat,” ANZ says.

Of what data that will be released, most a second-tier reports.

Westpac Bank will release Australia’s latest consumer sentiment report for May at 10.30am AEST while Japanese labour cost earnings for March will arrive at 10am AEST.

The quiet calendar continues in the second half of the session with French industrial output, Canadian building permits and US producer price inflation the headline acts.

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