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US Dollar Drops as Trump’s Ban Raises Demand for Safety

January 30, 2017 at 17:54 by Yahia Barakah

Benjamin Franklin's portrait on a hundred-dollar billThe US dollar declined against the Japanese yen and failed to rise against other major peers on Monday. Traders had no appetite for risk following a decision from US President Donald Trump to ban travel from a number of countries, which caused protests and raised fears of his protectionist approach.

The ban, which prevents citizens of seven countries with a Muslim majority from entering the United States for 90 days, increased traders’ concerns that Trump would follow through with his promises. Thousands have gathered in New York, Washington, and other cities and major airports in the United States to protest Trump’s executive order, which includes Syrian refugees.

The latest executive order added to mounting concerns towards the US president who took office merely 10 days ago. In last week, Trump officially withdrew the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, and now has his eyes on renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Growing concerns weighed on the dollar’s rally and raised demand for safe haven assets, most namely the Japanese yen, which often maintains value in periods of geopolitical or financial trouble. The lack of clarity on Trump’s economic policies, which were the incentive for the dollar’s rally, left traders looking for Trump’s next move, which turned out to be a protectionist one in the past weekend.

USD/JPY traded at 113.64 as of 17:30 GMT on Monday, the pair’s lowest level for the day, from 114.85 when trading opened. EUR/USD was at 1.0695, after starting the week at 1.0716. EUR/USD highest level today was 1.0738 at 01:40 GMT.

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