US Dollar Maintains Losses Ahead of GOP Healthcare Plan Vote

The US dollar maintained most of the recent losses it had against major counterparts on Thursday, as investors held their positions in anticipation for a vote that decides the future of the GOP Healthcare plan.

The vote, which will take place today in the House of Representatives, will gauge Republicans’ ability to stand united behind President Donald Trump as he pushes through with his political and economic agenda. If the Republican healthcare bill was approved, it will begin the process of dismantling the Affordable Care Act, which is widely known as Obamacare.

However, recent reports highlighted differences between conservatives and moderates within the Republican Party. As many as 26 Republicans may vote no, which will add to the 193 rejecting votes from Democrats and will prevent the bill from passing.

President Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan spent the last hours ahead of the proceedings of the House of Representatives attempting to reach a deal with moderate Republicans. However, a number of meetings and phone calls seem to have failed to score such a deal, according to latest reports.

Investors expect the US dollar to be negatively affected if the bill does not pass, since that will signal that the Trump administration could fail to bring other major parts of its agenda to reality. The greenback is currently trading near levels last seen in late November, the month when the currency started its rally following Trump’s victory in the US presidential election.

The market had a little reaction to economic data today. New home sales were higher in February than expectations at 592,000, according to a report by the US Census Bureau. Meanwhile, the Department of Labor said that initial jobless claims increased more than anticipated in the week ended March 18 to 258,000. A speech by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen earlier today also failed to move the market, as she made no reference of monetary policy.

EUR/USD traded at 1.0780 as of 17:40 GMT, from 1.0802 at 06:35 GMT, the pair’s highest level today. EUR/USD started the day at 1.0787.

The Dollar Index, which tracks the performance of the US currency against its major counterparts, was at 99.73 as of 17:35 GMT, from 99.67 yesterday.

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