By Peter Nurse
Investing.com – The U.S. dollar slumped to a seven-week low in early European trade Thursday following the latest Federal Reserve interest rate increase, while the pound surged ahead of a Bank of England get-together.
At 04:05 ET (08:05 GMT), the , which tracks the greenback against a basket of six other currencies, traded 0.2% lower at 101.763, just above levels last seen in early February.
The raised its benchmark funds rate by 25 basis points, as widely expected, but took a more cautious stance about further increases, hinting it could pause interest rate rises following turmoil in the banking sector.
The U.S. central bank also cut its median forecast for real GDP growth this year to 0.4% from 0.5%, suggesting the banking crisis was already having an impact on economic activity, albeit limited at the moment.
“The Federal Reserve has raised the policy rate by 25bp, but signaled it ‘may’ only hike once more. This is a little more dovish than anticipated, but the Fed is not expecting recent banking woes to significantly derail the economy,” said analysts at ING, in a note.
“We are more cautious and fear a tightening of credit conditions raises the chances of a hard landing for the economy.”
Elsewhere, rose 0.4% to 1.2313, near a seven-week high, ahead of the latest ‘s latest policy-setting meeting.
BOE Governor Andrew Bailey hinted earlier this month that the policymakers could be looking to pause its rate-hiking cycle, but the latest U.K. inflation data makes that look very unlikely.
British rose to 10.4% in February from January’s 10.1%, way above expectations and almost back to where it was in December.
rose 0.4% to 1.0901, near a seven-week high.
The increased interest rates by 50 basis points last week, and more hikes look likely even as the Fed hesitates over its next move.
“We need to get inflation under control, need to keep working until we have confidence that the backbone of inflation is broken,” said Governing Council member Madis Müller, in an interview Thursday, adding that the bulk of the tightening had probably already been done.
fell 0.2% to 0.9162, with the also seen raising rates 50 bps to 1.5% later this session as it is expected to view tackling as more important than any concerns over financial market turmoil.
traded 0.8% higher at 0.6737, fell 0.4% to 130.88, while dropped 0.8% to 6.8278, with these Asian currencies benefiting from the prospect of a less hawkish Fed.