* Aussie rises after RBA cuts rates by 25 bps as expected
* RBA offers no clear sign that it would ease again
* Dollar edges higher vs yen, pulls up from intraday low
By Masayuki Kitano
SINGAPORE, Aug 6 The Australian dollar pushed
higher on Tuesday after Australia's central bank cut interest
rates as expected and refrained from offering a clear hint that
it may ease monetary policy further.
Moves in other major currencies were relatively subdued,
with the euro easing 0.1 percent to $1.3247, while the
U.S. dollar edged up 0.3 percent versus the yen to 98.53 yen
The big mover on the day was the Australian dollar, which
gained 0.6 percent to $0.8982, pulling away from a
three-year low of $0.8848 set on Monday.
The Reserve Bank of Australia cut its main cash rate by a
quarter point to a record low of 2.5 percent on Tuesday as it
tries to prepare the economy for life after the mining boom.
The Aussie dollar rose as there had been some speculation
about the possibility of a 50 basis point rate cut, and also
because the RBA's statement suggested that it may be shifting
from an easing bias to a more neutral policy stance, said Hamish
Pepper, currency strategist at Barclays in Singapore.
"Previously they'd said the inflation outlook could provide
some scope to ease policy further should that be required to
support demand. Now that sentence is still there, but they refer
to it in past tense," Pepper said.
The change has "captured the market's attention and
potentially it suggests that the RBA might be moving to a more
neutral policy stance," he said.
While the Aussie dollar is likely to continue to be
pressured by slowing growth in China as well as a strengthening
U.S. economy and rising U.S. yields, it may gain some support in
the near-term, Pepper said.
"Positioning is extremely short. Most of the market, it
seems, has been selling Aussie dollars up to this point, so
perhaps this is a good juncture to take profit on those trades,"
The Australian dollar pushed higher against the yen as well,
gaining 0.8 percent on the day to 88.48 yen.
The U.S. dollar gained some respite versus the yen, having
retreated earlier after data on Friday showed that U.S.
employers slowed their pace of hiring in July.
That outcome had strengthened the view that the Fed could
wait until late in the year before scaling back its bond-buying
programme, rather than start its tapering in September.
The dollar had slipped versus the yen earlier in the day,
partly due to stop-loss dollar selling, but regained ground as
Japan's benchmark Nikkei share average pared losses and
turned higher, market players said.
Increases in Tokyo shares can be seen as positive for
investor risk appetites and spur selling of the yen, a
traditional safe haven currency that tends to rise in times of