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US Dollar Rallies on Better-Than-Expected Durable Goods, Personal Income

September 27, 2019 at 12:52 by Andrew Moran

A heap of USD notes and a heap of US centsThe US dollar is gaining on several major currencies at the end of the trading week, buoyed by strong economic data, including personal income and durable goods. In addition to the better-than-expected numbers, it was recently reported that high-level talks between US and China trade representatives will restart on October 11.

According to the US Census Bureau, new orders for manufactured durable goods advanced 0.2% in August, beating the market forecast of a 1.2% decline. They were down from the 2% increase in July. The US government also reported that durable goods orders ex transportation rose 0.5%, higher than the 0.2% the market penciled in. But durable goods orders ex defense fell 0.6% last month, sliding below the median estimate of 0.3%.

Last month, personal income surged 0.4%, up from 0.1% in July, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). This defeated the 0.3% the market had projected. Personal spending, however, edged up just 0.1%, lower than the 0.4% analysts had anticipated.

The personal consumption expenditure (PCE) price index was flat in August. The core PCE price index, which excludes energy and food prices, jumped 0.1% in August, lifting the index to 1.8% year-on-year.

It has been a good week for US economic data. New home sales soared, corporate profits surged, the goods trade deficit dipped, and the gross domestic product (GDP) for the second quarter was unrevised at 2%.

Media reports suggest that trade negotiations between the US and China are scheduled to resume in Washington on October 10. Sources close to the situation say that Chinese Vice Premier Liu He will be representing the delegation from Beijing.

Wang Yi, China’s state councillor and foreign minister, told reporters that Beijing would be willing to purchase more American goods, adding that the latest discussions could progress if both sides “take more enthusiastic measures” to show goodwill. He thinks if there were less “pessimistic language” that a US-China trade agreement could be closer to realization.

These were all factors that have lifted the US dollar this week. On Friday, the greenback edged up 0.03% to 99.16, bringing the buck’s weekly gain to 0.91%.

The USD/CAD currency pair rose 0.07% to 1.3269, from an opening of 1.3258, at 12:43 GMT on Friday. The EUR/USD climbed 0.24% to 1.0948, from an opening of 1.0920.

If you have any questions, comments, or opinions regarding the US Dollar, feel free to post them using the commentary form below.

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