Here are the major moves in Forex as of Friday, April 1 8:00 a.m.
- The US dollar index is down 0.2% at 94.52 ahead of a supersaturated day for US economic data featuring the March jobs report, manufacturing data, auto sales, and consumer confidence. The jobs report will be out first at 8:30 a.m. ET. Economists expect that the US added 205,000 nonfarm jobs, and that the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.9%.
- The Japanese yen is stronger by 0.4% versus the dollar at 112.07. Earlier in the day, the latest Tankan survey, which measures sentiment levels for large manufacturers, showed the lowest reading since Q2 2013. The survey’s reading slumped to +6 for the first quarter from its previous outlook of +12, missing economists’ expectations of +8. And the outlook was even more pessimistic, falling to +3 from +7.
- The euro is stronger by 0.4% at 1.1421 against the dollar after the latest reading for Eurozone manufacturing PMI came in at 51.6, a hair above economists’ expectations of 51.4. Germany’s PMI came in at 50.7, above expectations for 50.4, Italy’s reading came in at 53.5, above expectations of 52.5, and Spain’s came in at 53.4, below expectations of 54.1. A reading above 50 indicates an expansion in the sector.
- The British pound is weaker by 0.4% at 1.4301 versus the dollar after the UK’s manufacturing PMI reading came in slightly lower than expected at 51.0, below expectations of 51.2.
- South Korea’s won finished weaker by 0.9% at 1154.03 per dollar after Korean exports, which are sometimes called the world economy’s “canary in the coal mine” due to their exposure in the US, China, and Japan, fell for the 15th consecutive month. Exports were down 8.2% year-over-year in March, slightly better than economists’ expectations of a 10.4% drop. Still, the won was the best performing Asian currency in March, which Capital Economics Gareth Leather argued could be partially attributed to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s plan to invest 5% of its foreign currency reserves in won.
- The Chinese yuan finished down 0.2% at 6.4639 per dollar after some good news in the manufacturing sector. The latest reading came in at 50.2, ahead of forecasts for 49.3, which was the first expansion in the sector in eight months.