Fed rate hike, oil prices in focus

The dollar index, which tracks the dollar against a basket of major currencies, continued to trade below the 97 handle. The dollar index traded at 96.929 at 8:10 a.m. HK/SIN. Against the yen, the dollar was mostly flat, trading at 109.52 compared to levels around 109.59 seen in the previous session.

Oil prices fell to a seven-month low overnight due to a build in U.S. gasoline stocks. Brent crude was lower by 0.11 percent at $46.95 a barrel and U.S. crude was off by 0.22 percent at $44.62.

In New Zealand, first quarter GDP rose 0.5 percent, missing an expected gain of 0.7 percent on quarter, and at an annual pace of 2.5 percent, below the 2.7 percent gain seen. The kiwi fell 0.29 percent to 0.7248 against the dollar after the data.

Economic data expected through the course of the trading session includes the Reserve Bank of Australia’s bulletin at 9:30 a.m. HK/SIN and China foreign direct investment numbers for the month of May at 3:00 p.m.

In central bank news, the Bank of Japan begins a two-day meeting today. The Bank of England will make its rate decision at 7:00 p.m. HK/SIN.

On Wall Street, stocks closed mixed after the Fed’s announcement, with the Dow Jones industrial average gaining 0.22 percent or 46.09 points to close at 21,374.56.

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