Feb. 19: Asian session
Asian stocks declined ahead of a gauge of Chinese manufacturing tomorrow forecast to show continued contraction. MSCI Asia Pacific Index of stocks declined 0.2%. Japanese Nikkei 225 fell by 0.6%.
USD/JPY declined to 102.13. Yen strengthened as the risk aversion increased. AUD/USD tested $0.8994, but then returned above $0.9000, though is still trading on the downside. NZD/USD rose to $0.8310 after testing $0.8280 earlier today.
EUR/USD rose to the levels above $1.3770. US dollar weakened before the Fed releases minutes of its January meeting as investors look for the stance of policy makers on recent economic data. GBP/USD is trading just below $1.6700, above yesterday’s low at $1.6654. Data due at 09:30 GMT may show that British jobless rate held at the lowest since March 2009.