US dollar declines amid rate-hike uncertainty

New York, Feb 17 (IANS) The US dollar ended lower against most major currencies amid uncertainties over the timing of Federal Reserve’s next rate-hike.

In late New York trading on Thursday, the euro rose to $1.0669 from $1.0587 in the previous session, and the British pound climbed to $1.2490 from $1.2445 in the previous session, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Australian dollar fell to $0.7695 from $0.7700.

The US dollar bought 113.23 Japanese yen, lower than 114.27 yen of the previous session. The US dollar dropped to 0.9978 Swiss francs from 1.0069 Swiss francs, and it edged down to 1.3063 Canadian dollars from 1.3092 Canadian dollars.

Investors have lowered bets on an interest-rate increase as soon as next month as Fed Chair Janet Yellen did not send a clear message of whether the central bank will raise interest rate at its March meeting.

However, at her testimony before the Congress on Wednesday, Yellen signaled more than two rate-hikes this year as economy continues to make progress toward the maximum employment and price stability objectives.

According to CME Group’s FedWatch program, investors saw a 22 per cent chance of a rate increase in March on Thursday, down from 31 percent in the previous session.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, was down 0.67 per cent at 100.500 in late trading.