- Indian Rupee (INR) strengthens after 4 days of losses
- Current account surplus recorded
- US Dollar (USD) steadies after jobless claims unexpectedly rise
- US government avoids shutdown
The US Dollar Indian Rupee (USD/INR) exchange rate is heading lower after four straight sessions of gains. The pair settled +0.12% on Wednesday at 74.27. At 10:30 UTC, USD/INR trades +0.05% lower 74.31.
India’s current account moved into surplus in the three months from April to June. The current surplus was $6.5 billion or 0.9% of GDP compared to $19.1 billion in the same quarter a year ago, which marked a record high quarter.
India moved to a current account surplus for the first time in over 10 years in the January – March quarter of 2020. The surplus comes thanks to the strong performance of exports as global growth picked up. However, India could struggle to maintain the surplus as commodity prices rise.
The US Dollar is heading lower versus the Indian Rupee and its major peers. The US Dollar Index, which measures the greenback versus a basket of major currencies trades -0.03% at the time of writing at 94.30 but continues to hover around its highest level in in almost a year.
The US Dollar remains well support by safe haven flows and expectations that the Federal Reserve will move to taper bond purchases soon.
US treasury yields remain elevated around 3 month highs, after steadily climbing following last week’s Federal Reserve monetary policy meeting. The Fed indicated that it could start tapering bond purchases before the end of the year.
That said the US Dollar came off session highs and moved lower following a surprise rise in initial jobless claims. Claims rose to 362k, up from 351k. Analysts had been expecting a fall.
Separately safe haven flows are supporting the US Dollar as concerns over the US debt ceiling threaten to shut the US government down before the end of the year. Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer said yesterday that lawmakers had reached a deal to extend government spending until December 3rd. However, this is just kicking the can down the road.