Dollar heads for worst week in over a year amid political uncertainty


The dollar moved broadly lower after a report that a senior White House adviser is a person of interest in the investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

The White House earlier this week pushed back against a new wave of media allegations that President Donald Trump might have tried to obstruct justice by asking then FBI Director James Comey to end a probe into former national security adviser Michael Flynn. The S&P energy index was up 1.1pc along with a jump in oil prices.

"I'm sure some of (the move in markets) is related to that, and the fact that Trump is going to be out of the country and nobody's quite sure what he's going to do", said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Asset Management in Chicago, speaking of the latest headlines from Washington.

Japan's Nikkei was nearly 0.1 percent higher, headed for a decline of 1.6 percent for the week.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.1 percent, on track for a weekly loss of 0.5 percent.

Emerging market stocks rose 0.74 percent. Emerging markets have also been grappling with an unfolding corruption scandal in Brazil that threatens to engulf its president, Michel Temer.

Sterling inched higher against the dollar on Friday as the greenback fell across the board and Thursday's upbeat U.K retail data boosted sterling.

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Malaysian shares advanced 0.2 percent and the ringgit was nearly 0.1 percent higher at 4.323 per dollar, after first-quarter gross domestic product grew at 5.6 percent from a year ago, the fastest pace in two years. It was on track for its largest weekly percentage fall since February 2016.

Including Friday's losses, the U.S. Dollar Index (DXY) sustained losses of more than 2 percent this week.

Foley added that worries over Trump had also coincided with a run of weaker United States data that has seen a slight pull-back of expectations that the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates next month, which had also pressured the dollar. Expectations increased that big crude exporters will extend output cuts to curb an inventory glut. MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe rose 0.8 percent, while European shares climbed 0.5 percent.The U.S. yield curve slumped during the week to levels not seen since Trump's election, and the probability given by markets of the Fed raising rates next month has tumbled to below 60 percent from over 90 percent last week.

Brent posted its largest weekly advance of the year, while US crude gained over 5 percent.

Benchmark 10-year note yields were unchanged on the day at 2.23 percent, after earlier rising as high as 2.26 percent. The dollar fell 0.3 percent against the yen to 111.14 and had its first weekly drop in five against the Japanese currency.

Japan's Nikkei rallied 0.1 percent, but remains headed for a 1.8 percent loss for the week.

Dow Jones closed up by 0.67 percent, S&P 500 ended up 0.66 percent, Nasdaq finished the day up by 0.45 percent.