Antipodean currencies such as the Australian and the New Zealand dollars strengthened against their major counterparts in the Asian session on Thursday, as Asian stock markets traded in positive territory, tracking the overnight gains on Wall Street and higher commodity prices.
Investors are also digesting comments from major central banks that indicate interest rates may be heading higher.
Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said Wednesday that monetary stimulus may need to be withdrawn to some extent in future, implying interest rates may be raised. In addition, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz told CNBC that previous rate cuts “have done their job.”
The crude oil delivery for August is currently up by 0.26 percent or $45.00 per barrel. Crude oil prices rose Wednesday as U.S. government data showed a significant drop in gasoline stockpiles. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its weekly petroleum status report showing that the gasoline stocks fell by 894,000 barrels, compared with analysts’ expectations for a larger drop.
However, U.S. commercial crude inventories increased by 100,000 barrels last week, EIA said.
In other economic news, data from the Housing Industry Association showed that new home sales in Australia increased for the second straight month in May. Total home sales climbed 1.1 percent month-over-month in May, faster than the 0.8 percent rise in April.
Data from ANZ Bank showed business confidence in New Zealand strengthened notably in June to the strongest level in nine months. The business confidence index climbed to 24.8 in June from 14.9 in the previous month. Moreover, this was the highest score since September 2016.
Wednesday, the Australian and the New Zealand dollars showed mixed trading against their major rivals. While the aussie rose against the U.S. dollar and the yen, it fell against the euro.
Meanwhile, the NZ dollar fell against the U.S. dollar and the euro, but rose against the yen.
In the Asian trading,…