Investing.com

Investing.com - The Japanese yen retained gains against the dollar on Wednesday after comments from the Bank of Japan governor that suggested current monetary policy was appropriate.



USD/JPY traded at 101.93, down 0.06%, after Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said further easing was possible even with interest rates at near zero.



"It is possible to implement monetary easing even in a situation where the policy rate is around zero percent," Kuroda said in an opening speech to the BOJ''s international conference on "monetary policy in a post-financial crisis era."



Australia''s April Westpac-MI leading index fell 0.5 points to 98.00, recording its third straight month of sub-trend growth momentum.



First quarter construction work done in Australia rose 0.3%, compared to an expectation for a a drop of 0.2% quarter-on-quarter.



AUD/USD traded at 0.9257, down 0.02%, rebounding slightly after the data.



Overnight, the dollar firmed against most major currencies after solid U.S. housing, consumer confidence and wholesale pricing data sparked fresh expectations that the Federal Reserve remains on track to wind down greenback-weakening monetary stimulus programs this year.



The Conference Board reported earlier that its consumer confidence index rose to 83.0 this month from 81.7 in April, in line with market expectations.



Elsewhere, the Standard & Poor’s/ Case-Shiller house price index rose 12.4% in March from a year earlier, beating forecasts for a gain of 11.8% and following a rise of 12.9% in February.



Healthy wholesale pricing data firmed the greenback as well.



The Commerce Department reported earlier U.S. durable goods orders rose 0.8% in April, confounding expectations for a 0.5% fall, after a 3.6% increase in March, whose figure was revised up from a previously estimated 2.9% rise.



Core durable goods orders, which are stripped of volatile transportation items, rose 0.1% last month, missing expectations for a 0.3% increase. Core durable goods orders in March were revised up to a 2.9% gain from a previously estimated 2.4% rise.



Tuesday''s data renewed market expectations for the Federal Reserve to continue winding down stimulus measures this year provided recovery remains on track.



Meanwhile across the Atlantic Ocean, sentiment on the euro remained fragile after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said the bank will do everything feasible for the euro zone economy within its mandate, comments that fueled expectations for additional easing measures.



The US Dollar Index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, fell 0.03% at 80.40.





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