US dollar climbs on Fed officials’ comments

New York, Nov 17 (IANS) The US dollar increased against most major currencies as Federal Reserve officials’ hawkish remarks bolstered market speculation for an interest rate hike in December.

In late New York trading on Wednesday, the euro fell to $1.0670 from $1.0720, and the British pound dipped to $1.2433 from $1.2440, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Australian dollar slipped to $0.7477 from $0.7545.

The dollar bought 109.35 Japanese yen, higher than 109.13 yen in the previous session. The dollar inched up to 1.0039 Swiss francs from 1.0021 Swiss francs, and it fell to 1.3431 Canadian dollars from 1.3468 Canadian dollars.

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard said on Wednesday that “single policy-rate increase, possibly in December, may be sufficient to move monetary policy to a neutral setting.”

He added that there’s a chance the US economy could get a medium-term boost if President-elect Donald Trump boosts infrastructure spending and reforms taxes.

Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren said on Tuesday the central bank won’t be easily swayed from a December rate hike.

On the economic front, the Producer Price Index (PPI) for final demand was unchanged in October, seasonally adjusted, worse than market consensus of a 0.3-percent increase, the US Labor Department reported on Wednesday.

US industrial production was unchanged in October after decreasing 0.2 per cent in September, announced the Federal Reserve.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against six major peers, was up 0.28 per cent to 100.510 in late trading.