U.S. Dollar Off From 18-Months Low; Oil And Equities Surge Post Positive Economic Data

The U.S. Dollar (CURRENCY:USD) revived from its 18-months low on Friday, however, the gains remain limited. It seems that the guarded outlook of the Federal Reserve as revealed from its meeting minutes eclipsed upbeat U.S. data.

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Jobless rate falls

During Asian trade, USD/JPY rose 0.70% to 108.97, recovering from lows of 107.66. The slide in the U.S. dollar a day earlier came despite a report published by the U.S. Department of Labor that showed a decline in the number of jobless claims. The data reported a fall to 267,000 from 276,000 for the week ended on April 2, 2016, at 40 year lows.

In Asian markets, most indices finished mixed with China’s Shanghai SE Composite Index slipping the most, shedding 0.78% to 2,984.96. At the same time, Japan’s Nikkei 225 managed to reverse its losses on the back of a weaker yen, closing the day 0.46% up at 15,821.52.

The sentiment across European bourses remained positive as both oil and metal prices offered much-needed support to the equities. Germany’s DAX gained the most, adding 0.84% to 9,610.85. A steep rebound in Italian markets is also sending positive vibes in the region.

Oil surges, but analysts warn of a downturn

Among commodities, crude oil bounced back above $40 per barrel level, which gave respite to volatile equities across the world. During the late Asian hours, West Texas Intermediate rose 2.76% to $38.29 while Brent Crude added up 2.13% to $40.27. The uptick in economic indicators in the U.S. and Germany eased off concerns and spurred hopes of increasing fuel demand.

However, oil market analysts maintain that the oversupply scenario is here to stay, which could push crude prices back down. The cautious tone follows statement from Iraq, which said that its oil exports rose to 3.5 million barrels per day in April from 3.29 million in March, leading to doubts over the success of a meeting between oil producers on April 17.

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