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Asian shares slip, dollar stands tall on Fed hike bets

Asian shares slip, dollar stands tall on Fed hike bets

Asian shares slip, dollar stands tall on Fed hike bets

Fischer's comments come ahead of a speech scheduled on Friday by Fed Chair Janet Yellen who is expected to give guidance on interest rate policy.

On Sunday, Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer gave a generally upbeat assessment of the USA economy's current strength in prepared remarks, saying the job market was close to full strength and still improving.

The euro was down 0.3 percent at $1.1289 EUR= , adding distance between $1.1366, its highest since June 24 reached on Thursday. "It's started in Europe and it's gathering some momentum in the USA", said David Keeble, global head of interest rates strategy at Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank in NY.

US crude fell 0.9 percent to $48.09 after gaining 9 percent last week, rising for a second straight week.

Markets have put the chances of an interest rate rise at some point this year at just over 50 per cent, but Yellen and her Fed colleagues have been keen to stress they believe markets are underestimating the central banks' willingness to act.

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New York Fed President William Dudley, a close ally of Yellen's, was among those sounding a more confident note in recent days on a possible near-term rate hike, citing broad progress in the US economy. Analysts expect Yellen will stick to an easy policy stance in her speech as domestic inflation remains below the Fed's 2 percent target and there continues to be uncertainty about the global risks to US economic growth.

Investors around the world have endured months of mixed messages from officials over the path of United States monetary policy.

The greenback initially gained on hawkish comments from New York Fed President William Dudley and Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart, but dollar bulls were disappointed after the July Fed policy meeting minutes suggested the central bank was not in a hurry to increase rates. Expectations for a rate hike in September were even lower, at around 20 percent. A low growth, low interest rate environment may imply more frequent zero lower bound episodes. "The DXY US dollar index already seemed to be looking ahead for some slightly more upbeat language on the US economy coming out this week as it rallied 0.4 per cent on Friday", he said.

European stocks traded lower on Monday, while Asia-Pacific indexes closed mixed to lower overnight.

The Aussie and kiwi extended losses from Friday, when ratings agency Moody's cut its outlook on Australian banks to negative, providing investors an impetus to sell both currencies.

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