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U.S. Dollar Edges Down, Extends Losses Amid Fears of Recession

- The U.S. dollar edged down on Monday in Asia after a closely-watched indicator for recession appeared on Friday.

The U.S. dollar index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies edged down 0.1% to 96.120 by 11:15 PM ET (03:15 GMT).

The spread between 3-month Treasury bills and 10-year note yields inverted for the first time since 2007 after data on Friday showed U.S. manufacturing data missed estimates.

This inversion of the yield curve is widely seen as a leading indicator of economic recession. It appeared before each of the last seven recessions, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research.

A downgraded economic outlook last week from the U.S. Federal Reserve also added to concerns of a weakening global growth.

The Fed kept interest rates on hold and indicated that there would be no further rate hikes this year - after indicating in December that two could take place.

Meanwhile, traders continue to await developments in the U.S.-China trade talks. A U.S. trade delegation, headed by Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will travel to Beijing this week to meet with Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He for further talks aimed at resolving the trade conflict between the world’s two largest economies.

The USD/CNY pair slipped 0.04% to 6.7135. Governor of the People’s Bank of China Yi Gang said at the at the China Development Forum in Beijing on Sunday that the central bank "has already withdrawn from day-to-day interventions and now more and more market participants are getting used to a flexible exchange rate."

The NZD/USD pair traded near flat at 0.6876. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand is set to announce its benchmark interest rate and publish a rate statement on Wednesday. Data on business confidence is due the next day.

The AUD/USD pair is also largely unchanged. The pair last traded at 0.7079, down 0.02%.

The USD/JPY pair slipped 0.1% to 109.82.

The GBP/USD pair traded 0.1% lower to 1.3196. Brexit is expected to remain in the spotlight this week after Friday’s deadline for the U.K. to exit the European Union has been pushed back by two weeks to April 12.

The delay would give British Prime Minister Theresa May more time to persuade lawmakers to accept the withdrawal deal she negotiated. If lawmakers refuse to approve the deal for a third time a number of options, including a no-deal Brexit, open up.

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