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Dollar, Aussie Slump as Kiwi Gains after Data

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The dollar slumped against the Swiss franc and Japanese yen on Wednesday as prospects of a Donald Trump presidency sent investors flocking to safe havens.

The yen gained more than 0.5% to reach its highest level in 12 days, while the franc touched a one-month high against the greenback. The currency has gained nearly 3% as improved polls for Trump have tightened the race.

The euro also gained against the dollar, reaching a high of $1.1099.

The Federal Reserve will conclude its two-day meeting on Wednesday and issue a statement later in the day. The central bank is not expected to raise rates, but investors will be looking for clues as to whether policymakers will hike rates in December.

Sterling strengthened against a weaker dollar, rising 0.22% to 1.2270. The currency was little changed against the euro, trading at 0.9034.

The pound was also boosted by upbeat construction activity data, which reached its fastest rate since March. Markit reported that its construction PMI was up to 52.6 in October from 52.3 in September. Economists had projected a decline to 51.8.

The currency’s gains were limited after Moody’s warned it may downgrade the U.K.’s credit rating if Brexit negotiations lead to the country losing access to the European Union’s single market.

The Aussie slid on downbeat building approvals, while the kiwi gained on positive inflation data.

AUD/USD fell 0.31% to 0.7628, while NZD/USD gained 0.7% to 0.7233.

The Australian Board of Statistics announced earlier on Wednesday that building approvals were down by 8.7% in September. A 3% slide was expected. Approvals were up by 1.8% the previous month.

The kiwi benefited from positive inflation data. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand reported on Wednesday that its inflation outlook for the next two years held steady at 1.7% in the third quarter.

 

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