Dollar Down After Employment Data Falls Short of Expectations

The dollar fell Friday, after U.S. employment data fell short of expectations.

The Wall Street Journal Dollar Index, which measures the U.S. currency against a basket of 16 others, was recently down 0.2% to 87.55.

Nonfarm payrolls rose a seasonally adjusted 261,000 in October, the Labor Department said Friday. The unemployment rate ticked down to 4.1%, its lowest level since December 2000. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected 315,000 new jobs and a 4.2% unemployment rate last month.

While Friday's payrolls data suggest the labor market remains on a solid trajectory, it does little to bolster the case for the Federal Reserve to tighten monetary policy at a faster pace than expected next year. Expectations of rising rates tend to boost the dollar, as rising borrowing costs make the currency more attractive to investors seeking yield.

The number "shows the economy struggling to shift into a higher gear," said Joe Manimbo, a strategist with Western Union. "This leaves the dollar ripe for more profit-taking."

The dollar has rallied nearly 4% from its September lows, driven by expectations that the White House will be able to push through its tax overhaul before year-end and a run of solid U.S. economic data.

Write to Ira Iosebashvili at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 03, 2017 09:38 ET (13:38 GMT)