Investing.com – The Australian and New Zealand dollars moved lower on Monday, as Friday’s upbeat data continued to support demand for the greenback, although speculation over the next head of the Federal Reserve limited the U.S. dollar’s gains.
AUD/USD was down 0.12% at 0.7668, not far from Friday’s three-month low of 0.7625.
The U.S. dollar remained supported after the Commerce Department reported on Friday that the U.S. economy grew at a 3% annual rate in the third quarter, better than forecasts for growth of 2.5%.
The stronger-than-expected reading underlined the case for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates befoe the end of the year.
The greenback had already received a boost on Thursday after House Republicans passed a budget blueprint for 2018, setting the stage for a tax overhaul. Some investors believe tax reforms could bolster growth and prompt the Fed to raise rates at a faster pace.
But sentiment on the U.S. dollar became more fragle following a report that U.S. President Donald Trump is considering nominating Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell to lead the U.S. central bank, a move that would signal continuity for monetary policy.
Powell is seen less hawkish than Stanford University economist John Taylor, another potential nominee to lead the Fed.
NZD/USD declined 0.68% to trade at 0.6840, also close to Friday’s five-month trough of 0.6818.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.41% at 93.38 by 03:30 a.m. ET (07:30 GMT), just off Friday’s more than three-month high of 95.06.