by | Feb 18, 2010 | Indicators, Resources

Trade outlook depends on the dollar’s rise and fall

Back from a three-day weekend you might have picked up a copy of the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday to find the U.S. dollar had strengthened relative to the euro, the result of a crisis of confidence in the European Union’s ability to cope with the struggling Greek economy. If, on the other hand, you read the Journal’s digital edition online with your morning coffee, you learned that the dollar’s surge had snapped as investors pushed the euro to its biggest single-day gain since July.

No matter whose trade forecast(s) you follow, the biggest variable (barring catastrophe) is the rise and fall of the U.S. dollar — and that can turn on a dime.

You can follow the dollar’s fortunes online with ICE U.S. Dollar Index (USDX), a leading benchmark for the international value of the U.S. dollar since its origination by the New York Board of Trade, or NYBOT. (The ICE, or Intercontinental Exchange, acquired NYBOT in 2007.) The ICE USDX Futures line graph captures the dollar’s fluctuations intraday or, over the last 3 months, year, or 2 years. The dollar-tracker at offers a bit more detail, and a few more choices of short timeframes. To monitor trends and calculate the value of your dollars against 164 currencies and 3 metals, try the Oanda currency converter.

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