NEW YORK: The US dollar clung to modest gains against the euro on Friday and was headed for its biggest weekly gain since February, as uncertainty around the US debt ceiling and monetary policy prompted a shift to safe havens.
Analysts said the greenback may be benefiting as debt ceiling talks progress and markets rethink the narrative that the US Federal Reserve will cut interest rates by year-end.
Fed Governor Michelle Bowman said the central bank will probably need to raise rates further if inflation stays high, adding that key data so far this month has not convinced her that price pressures are receding.
“It certainly does seem like Bowman’s comments this morning have added weight to the idea that the Fed will perhaps maintain that higher-for-longer stance. And that will keep yields relatively well supported,” said Karl Schamotta, chief market strategist of Corpay in Toronto.
The Bank of England hiked rates 25 basis points to 4.5% on Thursday. Data on Friday showed the British economy grew 0.1% in the first quarter.
Still, the pound was down 0.2% at $1.2490, while the euro weakened 0.4% to $1.0874, a day after falling to a one-month low.
The dollar index edged up 0.3% to 102.42 early in the session, notching a weekly gain of 1.1%. It pared gains following news that May US consumer sentiment slumped to a six-month low as a standoff to raise the federal government’s borrowing cap fanned worries about the economic outlook.