- The Australian dollar was steady against its U.S. counterpart on Tuesday, hovering near three-month highs despite comments by Reserve Bank of Australia Deputy Governor Philip Lowe saying that a weaker exchange rate is important for Australia''s economy.

AUD/USD hit 0.9158 during late Asian trade, the pair''s highest since December 10; the pair subsequently consolidated at 0.9131, easing up 0.01%.

The pair was likely to find support at 0.9051, Monday''s low and resistance at 0.9167, the high of December 10.

Asked whether he thinks an Australian dollar above $0.9100 is too high, Lowe answered that "if the exchange rate has to continue playing the stabilizing role, it would need to come down in time."

Lowe made the comments at the Q&A session following his speech at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission forum titled "Opportunities and Challenges for Market-based Financing."

Sentiment on the Aussie was still fragile after a report on Monday showed that Chinese manufacturing activity deteriorated for a third successive month in March.

China is Australia''s biggest export partner.

Meanwhile, the greenback remained under pressure after a report on Monday showed that the preliminary reading of the Markit U.S. manufacturing index came in at 55.5 in March, down from 57.1 in February.

The data indicated that the U.S. economy is still struggling to gain traction in the wake of a weather induced slowdown.

The Aussie was little changed against the euro, with EUR/AUD dipping 0.05% to 1.5151.

Later in the day, the U.S. was to release report on house price inflation and consumer confidence, as well as official data on new home sales.

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