Aussie gains, yen sags after Trump delays China tariffs

February 24, 2019

By Tomo Uetake

TOKYO (Reuters) – The risk-sensitive Australian dollar rose and the yen sagged in early Asian trade on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump said he will delay increasing tariffs on Chinese goods on March 1, citing “substantial progress” made in trade talks.

The Australian dollar gained 0.3 percent to $0.7149, reacting to Trump’s latest posts on Twitter.

The Japanese yen eased 0.1 percent to 110.77 yen to the dollar, while the offshore yuan strengthened 0.1 percent to 6.6930 yuan against the dollar, also on the news.

The U.S. president also said he would plan a summit meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida to conclude an agreement, assuming the trade talks make additional progress.

Trump’s tweets came amid rising expectations that he would delay increasing tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese imports before the March 1 deadline to avoid escalating in the trade war.

The president said in a tweet that progress had been made on a host of divisive areas including intellectual property protection, technology transfers, agriculture, services and currency.

Elsewhere, the New Zealand dollar rose 0.2 percent to $0.6856 after local retail sales jumped in the fourth quarter, tempering concerns of softer growth in the country’s economy.

(Reporting by Richard Borsuk)

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