Australian dollar rises

The Australian dollar has risen against the greenback overnight, buying 72.19 US cents, up from 72.13 US cents on Wednesday.

The local currency has risen along with global equities as tentative signs of easing Sino-US trade tensions whetted risk appetite.

The Australian dollar climbed 0.2 per cent to 72.19 US cents on Wednesday, rising above a one-month trough of 71.70 touched earlier in the week.

A gauge of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan jumped 0.9 per cent while US stock futures were upbeat too.

Risk appetite got a boost on Wednesday after US President Donald Trump said trade talks with Beijing were already underway, with more meetings likely among US and Chinese officials.

Trump also told Reuters that the Chinese government was buying a “tremendous amount” of US soybeans after a December 1 truce in the Sino-US trade war.

“Trade concerns are still creating the greatest downside in markets and because of this there is two-way risk,” said Kerry Craig, Global Market Strategist, J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

“Any improvement in the US-China relationship will be warmly welcomed by markets and the announcement on auto tariffs does illustrate that there is an upside,” Craig said.

“However, we wouldn’t be surprised to see things get worse before they get better.”

Also helping sentiment was news that Huawei Technologies’ chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, was granted bail by a Canadian court on Tuesday, 10 days after her arrest in Vancouver at the request of US authorities.

The Aussie has had tough year as the Sino-US trade tensions and worries about global growth chilled investor sentiment.

The currency has either fallen or remained flat in every single month but two so far in 2018.

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