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Dollar Turns Weak Against Most Of Its Peers

The U.S. dollar recovered after early weakness on Wednesday but started losing ground past noon, weighed down by remarks by the Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that interest rates will remain at near-zero levels for the foreseeable future.

Powell testified before House Financial Services Committee today, with his prepared remarks mirroring those he delivered before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday.

The Fed chief also continued to downplay the risks of inflation, which have recently spooked investors and driven treasury yields to their highest levels since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

Meanwhile, data released by the Commerce Department showed new home sales spiked by 4.3% to an annual rate of 923,000 in January after soaring by 5.5% to a revised rate of 885,000 in December. Economists had expected new home sales to surge up by 1.5 percent to a rate of 855,000 from the 842,000 originally reported for the previous month.

The dollar index, which advanced to 90.43 from a low of 89.98, slid to 90.02 by late afternoon, losing about 0.16%.

Against the Euro, the dollar weakened to $1.2173, sliding 0.17% from previous close of $1.2152.

The Pound Sterling was stronger, fetching $1.4142 a unit, about 0.2% more than Tuesday's close of $1.4114.

The Yen weakened to 105.85 a dollar, from 105.25.

The Aussie firmed up against the greenback. The AUD-USD pair was quoting at 0.7972, giving the Aussie a gain of nearly 0.8%.

The Swiss franc weakened to 0.9065 a dollar, sliding by about 0.15%. The Loonie strengthened to 1.2507 a dollar, gaining nearly 0.7%, as crude oil prices rose sharply.

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