The dollar index was down 0.49% against a basket of six major currencies. The index has gained 4.2 percent this year, with all those gains having come after the November U.S. election.
“The dollar fall was mostly due to renewed doubts about the U.S. recovery after pending home sales dropped in November. This is where the risk-off reversal started,” said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior market analyst at London Capital Group.
The drop can also be considered as profit-taking – the strong dollar that we’ve seen since the start of november could be at its current toppish environments for the short-term.
Gold prices increased sharply this week, currently trading at $1,160, triggered by “market timers” who trade aggressively when an asset reaches low levels.
Crude oil inventories showed a surprise build, pushing crude oil prices lower yesterday. In the minutes following the release, crude managed to crawl back to slight gains in choppy trade. However, U.S. crude eventually headed south while Brent pared gains to trade near the unchanged mark. Brent crude oil is currently prices at $57.17 a barrel.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other producers led by Russia have announced cutbacks of almost 1.8 million barrels per day in oil output starting from January 1 in an effort to bolster prices and support the market. In a sign that the world’s major oil producers may abide by their agreement, OPEC member Venezuela said it will cut 95,000 barrels per day of oil production in the new year.
Meanwhile, the members of an OPEC and non-OPEC committee formed to monitor the market may meet on January 21-22, according to Kuwaiti oil minister Essam Al-Marzouq, which may give an early indication of compliance with the deal.
Wall Street closed slightly lower on Thursday as bank shares declined in quiet holiday trading as traders looked to position for the new year.