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CURRENCIES : Dollar Drops On Nafta, China Trade Developments

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09/12/2018 | 03:08pm EDT

By Anneken Tappe

The U.S. dollar weakened Wednesday, while its Canadian rival was boosted by euphoria over potential progress regarding the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Mexican Secretary of the Economy Ildefonso Guajardo said at an event in Mexico City that there was a high chance of the U.S. and Canada reaching a trade deal. The U.S. and Mexico already struck an agreement to revise Nafta back in August. Earlier, reports pointed at Canada being willing to make concessions on protecting its dairy industry.

Canada's dollar , also known as the loonie, rallied in response, though the stark reaction to the headlines showed that investors were just looking for direction, market participants said. The greenback last bought C$1.2997--a two-week low--compared with C$1.3067 late Tuesday.

In other trade news, the U.S. requested a new round of trade talks with China , according to The Wall Street Journal. China's yuan was stronger versus the greenback on Wednesday, with one dollar buying 6.8596 yuan in Beijing and 6.8278 in the offshore market.

heck out:5 things about a U.S.-China trade war that might surprise investors

Meanwhile, the ICE U.S. Dollar Index , which measures the buck against a basket of six other currencies, was down 0.5% at 94.789. Earlier in the session, the producer-price index for August came in below expectations, falling 0.1% rather than rising 0.2% as forecast by economists polled by MarketWatch.

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book meanwhile showed that some of the Fed's 12 district reported weaker growth in August, even as the overall economy expanded. This weakness came on the back of concerns over trade.


The euro , one of the dollar's main rivals, rose to $1.1636 from $1.1607, boosted by the weaker dollar, shrugging off the expectation that the European Central Bank will cut its 2019 growth projection in Thursday's policy update.

Check out:Turkey central bank's next move is anyone's guess--and that leaves lira vulnerable

Don't miss:Case for dollar bulls intact ahead of central bank meetings

Meanwhile European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker reiterated the six to eight week timeline for a possible Brexit deal between Brussels and London that chief negotiator Michel Barnier had made headlines with on Monday .

"Juncker was uncharacteristically gracious in his discussion of the issue, stating that the EU respects the U.K.'s right to leave the union, but that it will not compromise on the Irish border stance," wrote Boris Schlossberg, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management.

The British pound was up at $1.3054, from $1.3032 late Tuesday in New York.

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