NEW YORK, December 6, Reuters - The dollar moved higher against safe-haven currencies such as the yen and Swiss franc after reassuring news on the Omicron COVID 19 variant, while units like the Australian dollar weakened in recent weeks due to growth worries.
The U.S. Treasury yield went up and stocks gained after initial observations suggested Omicron patients had mild symptoms, reversing some of Friday's heavy selloff.
As of Sunday, Omicron has spread to about one-third of U.S. states, said Anthony Fauci, top U.S. infectious disease official, told CNN that the absence of negative developments surrounding Omicron over the weekend seems to be helping markets stabilize after the dramatic moves at the end of last week, according to Marc Chandler, chief market strategist at Bannockburn Global Forex.
The dollar climbed 0.5% against the Japanese yen and rose 0.9% against the Swiss franc. When economic or geopolitical tensions rise, investors look for safety with the help of the yen and the franc.
The dollar fell by 0.3% against the Japanese currency on Friday. The data did not shake market expectations that the Federal Reserve will speed up unwinding stimulus and raise interest rates starting next year, although the greenback's losses on Friday had also followed a below-forecast jobs report.
The U.S. Dollar Currency Index, a measure of the dollar against six rivals, was 0.1% higher at 96.309, not far from the 16 month high of 96.938 touched late last month.
The long bets on the greenback have gone up to the highest level since June 2019, according to data from the U.S. CFTC on Friday.
The Australian dollar rebounded from its 13 month low last week, rebounding from the 13 month low of last week.
Russia's rouble fell into the red on Monday after U.S. President Joe Biden warned his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin of the severe economic consequences in case of a Ukrainian invasion ahead of a call between the two men on Tuesday.
The Canadian dollar was strengthened against its U.S. counterpart on Monday as oil prices went up and attention turned to a Bank of Canada interest rate decision this week, with the currency recovering from its lowest level in more than two months.
A wild weekend in which cryptocurrencies crushed more than 20% of the digital currency, resulted in big losses. The price of cryptocurrencies fell by 0.6% to around $49,166. It was 35 on Monday.