Dollar index steady; Jackson Hole meeting in focus

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With very little major economic data to watch, investors were forced to speculate on the outcome of President Trump's speech Monday night, the commencement of military exercises between South Korea and the USA, and the start of the annual central banking conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming later this week. Draghi's speech will be on the topic of the Symposium 'Fostering a Dynamic Global Economy, indicating a shift to a broader agenda and is unlikely to signal a change in policy stance until the next meeting.

ING FX Strategy Research has been arguing since the July ECB meeting that markets might have got ahead of themselves when it comes to pricing in the ECB's next steps. The seminar this year is entitled "Fostering a Dynamic Global Economy", but Ms Yellen will be speaking on "Financial Stability". The continued lack of United States economic data is keeping some investors on the sidelines. Draghi will take the podium later that day. It's a lot easier to solve these problems with faster growth.

Two sources have said Draghi will not deliver any new policy message at Jackson Hole.

Economists expect the reading of quarterly growth to remain unchanged at 0.3%.

Coming under pressure, DGCX's pound-US dollar contract was trading 2.6 per cent lower in August. Both central banks shoot for 2% inflation, though the ECB formally aims below, but close to, that target.

The Australian dollar inched up 0.1 percent to $0.7944 for its third straight session of gains, though activity was subdued. Inflation is also low in Japan, though sub-par price gains have been a longer-lived issue there. Bank of England Gov. Mark Carney plans to skip the event.

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The upcoming Jackson Hole Economic Symposium will attract some market attention.

Deutsche Bank adds that the Fed has already prepared the way for announcing "a reinvestment taper in September without hiking". Persistent doubts about the prospects for another Fed interest rate hike this year, at a time of subdued USA inflation, have also weighed on the dollar.

The focus will be most intense on Mr Draghi. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.1756 compared to yesterday's $1.1815.

On Monday, the GBP EUR exchange rate trended within a relatively tight range between 1.0934 and 1.0971. "The surge in euro's price has been taking its toll on the domestic economy - as seen on other reports earlier this month - and with the European Central Bank still considering tapering this effect will only intensify making German exporting goods more expensive" commented ADS Securities Analyst, Konstantinos Anthis.

In the case of Ms Yellen, the big question investors have is how optimistic she is about the U.S. economic recovery, which will in turn provide clues on the speed and extent to which monetary policy will continue to tighten.