April 1, 2019 / 1:52 PM / 4 months ago

FOREX-Dollar dips against euro as retail sales fall

    * US retail sales unexpectedly fall in February
    * Inflation slows in euro zone
    * Chinese factory activity boosts Aussie dollar

 (New throughout, updates prices, market activity and comments
to U.S. market open, new byline, changes dateline, previous
LONDON)
    By Karen Brettell
    NEW YORK, April 1 (Reuters) - The U.S. dollar weakened
slightly against the euro on Monday as investors weighed a drop
in U.S. retail sales against slowing inflation in the euro zone,
with central banks in both regions seen on hold in the
near-term.
    The Commerce Department said on Monday retail sales dropped
0.2 percent in February as households cut back on purchases of
furniture, clothing, food and electronics and appliances, as
well as building materials and gardening equipment. 
    Data for January was revised higher to show retail sales
increasing 0.7 percent instead of gaining 0.2 percent as
previously reported.
    The dollar dipped briefly on the data before clawing back
losses, though it remained 0.18 percent weaker on the day.
 
    “People are looking at the revisions and getting a little
bit of comfort from those, although I think on net the numbers
are probably negative overall for the U.S. economy,” said Erik
Nelson, a currency strategist at Wells Fargo in New York.
    The greenback also likely has some safe haven support on the
view that a weakening U.S. economy would also result in lower
stocks, which would boost the dollar, Nelson said. “That’s the
dynamic we’ve seen in the last year or so,” he said.
    Stronger stocks on Monday also likely reduced demand for the
greenback.
    The euro was mildly stronger on the day even as data showed
that euro zone headline and core inflation slowed in March,
supporting the European Central Bank’s decision to delay a
planned tightening of monetary policy.
    Commodity currencies including the Australian dollar gained
after Chinese factory activity grew unexpectedly for the first
time in four months in March, suggesting government stimulus
measures may be starting to take hold in the world’s
second-largest economy.
    The Aussie currency (AUD=> gained 0.48 percent against the
U.S. dollar to $0.7129.  
    Sterling gained before Parliament was again set to try to
take control of Britain's departure from the European Union,
with some lawmakers hoping to force Prime Minister Theresa May
to drop her Brexit strategy and pursue close economic ties with
the bloc.
    The pound was up 0.62 percent against the greenback
to $1.3113.
    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 9:35AM (1335 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar      EUR=        $1.1236        $1.1216     +0.18%         -2.03%      +1.1249     +1.1215
 Dollar/Yen       JPY=        110.9000       110.8400    +0.05%         +0.58%      +111.1800   +110.8200
 Euro/Yen         EURJPY=     124.61         124.33      +0.23%         -1.28%      +124.9400   +124.3700
 Dollar/Swiss     CHF=        0.9954         0.9950      +0.04%         +1.43%      +0.9964     +0.9936
 Sterling/Dollar  GBP=        1.3113         1.3032      +0.62%         +2.79%      +1.3124     +1.3010
 Dollar/Canadian  CAD=        1.3341         1.3349      -0.06%         -2.17%      +1.3370     +1.3336
 Australian/Doll  AUD=        0.7129         0.7095      +0.48%         +1.12%      +0.7132     +0.7104
 ar                                                                                             
 Euro/Swiss       EURCHF=     1.1184         1.1161      +0.21%         -0.61%      +1.1191     +1.1167
 Euro/Sterling    EURGBP=     0.8568         0.8608      -0.46%         -4.64%      +0.8626     +0.8561
 NZ               NZD=        0.6829         0.6802      +0.40%         +1.67%      +0.6837     +0.6811
 Dollar/Dollar                                                                                  
 Dollar/Norway    NOK=        8.5738         8.6216      -0.55%         -0.75%      +8.6198     +8.5695
 Euro/Norway      EURNOK=     9.6360         9.6783      -0.44%         -2.73%      +9.6793     +9.6329
 Dollar/Sweden    SEK=        9.2748         9.2945      -0.10%         +3.47%      +9.2912     +9.2330
 Euro/Sweden      EURSEK=     10.4215        10.4320     -0.10%         +1.54%      +10.4290    +10.3780
 
    
    
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 (Editing by Susan Thomas)
  
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