US Dollar Index turns negative on dovish Powell

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US President Donald Trump has been one of the loudest critics of the rising rates, which raise the cost of borrowing and risk dampening economic growth.

"We will be patient as we watch to see how the economy evolves", he said.

"Markets are expressing concerns about global growth in particular and trade negotiations", Powell said at an event in Atlanta.

The index gave away part of the post-Payrolls gains to the 96.60 region as market participants continue to gauge the speech by Fed's Jerome Powell.

"If the president asked you to resign, would you do it?" the moderator asked Powell.

Powell's remarks reassured investors who have anxious the Fed might raise rates excessively, but Jason Schenker of Prestige Economics suggested the Fed could. "We are always prepared to shift the stance of policy and to shift it significantly" if needed. "The Fed is going loco and there's no reason for them to do it".

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Mr Powell said that he did not believe the Fed's removal of stimulus by shrinking holdings of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities played a major role in the recent market turmoil. Powell responded with a terse "No" when asked if he would resign if Trump requested him to do so.

"The markets are feeling better that the Fed is not strangling the overall economy and perhaps forcing it into a recession, and that removes a monetary policy concern that has been hanging over the market for the past few months", said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist and senior portfolio manager at SlateStone Wealth LLC.

Powell seemingly acknowledged that, despite strong economic data, investors are anxious after Wall Street's rocky December, which saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 post their worst performances since the Great Depression (however, that same month, the US economy added 312,000 jobs - nearly double the number that analysts were anticipating - pushing the markets higher on Friday). Data released earlier on Friday showed USA employers added the most workers in 10 months as wage gains accelerated.

"We're listening carefully.to the message that markets are sending and we'll be taking those downside risks into account as we make policy going forward", he said. That suggests the Fed won't tighten again in March, she said.

Powell called the employment figures a "very strong report", though he showed no anxiety about the advance in wages.

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