© Reuters. Aussie and kiwi lose ground against greenback on Yellen remarks
Investing.com — The Australian and New Zealand dollars moved lower on Wednesday, as hopes for a U.S. rate hike in December lent broad support to the greenback and as investors were looking ahead to the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s interest rate decision on Thursday.
AUD/USD slid 0.38% to 0.7856, the lowest since August 16.
In a speech on Tuesday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Tuesday that the Federal Reserve needs to continue gradual interest rate hikes despite uncertainty about the path of inflation.
It would be «would be imprudent to keep monetary policy on hold until inflation is back to 2%,» she said.
The U.S. dollar had already found support after New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley on Monday said the Fed is on track to gradually raise interest rates given factors depressing inflation are «fading» and the U.S. economy’s fundamentals are sound.
Markets appeared to shrugged off a report by the Conference Board on Tuesday showing that U.S. consumer confidence fell more than expected in September.
A separate report showed that U.S. new home sales fell for a second straight month in August.
NZD/USD edged 0.17% lower to 0.7195.
On Thursday, the RBNZ was expected to leave interest rates unchanged at 1.75% but comments following the decision were likely to be closely monitored for any hints on future policy decisions.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, wasup 0.19%at 92.98 by 02:05 a.m. ET (06:05 GMT), just off the previous session’s three-week high of 93.03.