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Dollar at three-week lows as Treasury yields subdued

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Dollar dips before consumer price inflation data

By Karen Brettell

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The dollar dipped to three-week lows on Wednesday as Treasury yields held below recent highs and improving risk appetite reduced demand for the safe haven currency.

The dollar has gained this year as Treasury yields rose on expectations of faster growth and higher inflation. That trade has paused this month, however, with yields stabilizing below one-year highs reached last month.

“The whole pro dollar trade is based upon the yield story and given the fact that the yield story has backed off the highs, the dollar has pretty much done the same thing,” said Boris Schlossberg, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management in New York.

“Until the bond market gets the heebie-jeebies over the inflation fears again I think the long dollar position remains under assault,” he said.

Treasury yields have also fallen this week after the Treasury Department saw solid demand for new sales of three-, 10- and 30-year debt on Monday and Tuesday. [US/]

The dollar index fell to as low as 91.662, the lowest since March 19, and was last at 91.733, down 0.05% on the day.

The euro gained 0.13% to $1.1965. The greenback fell 0.05% to 108.98 Japanese yen.

Data on Tuesday showed that U.S. consumer prices rose by the most in more than 8-1/2 years in March, but it wasn’t enough to change expectations that the Federal Reserve will hold rates near zero for years to come.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak later on Wednesday at the Economic Club of Washington; his comments on inflation will be keenly watched as he has previously said higher pressures in the coming months would be transitory.

The next major U.S. economic release will be retail sales for March on Thursday.

The New Zealand dollar rose to a three-week high of $0.7122 after the country's central bank held its official interest rate and asset purchase program steady, as expected.

In cryptocurrencies, bitcoin touched a record high of $64,895 ahead of the listing of cryptocurrency platform Coinbase on Nasdaq later on Wednesday.

(Additional reporting by Saikat Chatterjee in London; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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