Antipodean currencies such as the Australian and the New Zealand dollars continued to be strong against their major counterparts in the Asian session on Thursday, after data showed that China’s exports increased more than expected in May.
Data from the General Administration of Customs showed that China’s exports, in dollar terms, advanced 8.7 percent year-on-year in May, faster than the 7.2 percent increase economists had forecast.
Likewise, imports climbed 14.8 percent, bigger than the expected 8.3 percent.
As a result, the trade surplus totaled $40.8 billion in May versus the expected surplus of $47.8 billion.
Asian stocks recouped early losses to trade mostly higher as China reported stronger-than-anticipated trade data and oil prices recovered some ground after steep losses on Wednesday.
Investors shrugged off sluggish GDP data out of Japan and news that North Korea fired several anti-ship cruise missiles off its east coast.
Standard & Poor’s downgraded the sovereign ratings of Qatar by one notch to ‘AA-‘ and placed the rating on CreditWatch with negative implications after six Arab nations moved to cut diplomatic ties and trade links with Qatar.
In other economic news, data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that Australia posted a seasonally adjusted merchandise trade surplus of A$555 million in April. That was well shy of forecasts for a surplus of A$2.0 billion following the A$3.107 billion surplus in March.
Imports were down A$171 million or 1.0 percent on month to A$30.035 billion. Exports skidded A$2.784 billion or 8.0 percent to A$30.590 billion.
Wednesday, the Australian and the New Zealand dollars had risen against their major counterparts. The Australian dollar rose 0.58 percent against the U.S. dollar, 0.25 percent against the yen and 0.76 percent against the euro. The New Zealand dollar rose 0.01 percent against the U.S. dollar, 0.19 percent against the yen, and 0.33 percent against the euro.
In the Asian trading, the Australian dollar…