AUD/USD clings to gains near multi-week tops, 0.7400 mark remains in sight
Upbeat Australian trade balance figures assisted AUD/USD to regain traction on Thursday.
Dovish Fed expectations kept the USD bulls on the defensive and remained supportive.
A softer risk tone, COVID-19 jitters might act as a headwind for the perceived riskier aussie.
The AUD/USD pair edged higher through the first half of the trading action on Thursday and was last seen hovering near three-week tops, around the 0.7380 region.
Following the previous day's modest pullback, the AUD/USD pair caught some fresh bids during the Asian session following the release of upbeat Australian trade balance figures. In fact, the trade surplus rose to another record high of A$ 10.2 billion in July, which, in turn, was seen as a key factor that provided a modest lift to the major.
That said, the continuous rise in new COVID-19 cases in Australia, along with a softer risk tone held bulls from placing any aggressive bets around the perceived riskier aussie. Apart from this, a modest US dollar rebound from one-month lows further collaborated to cap the upside for the AUD/USD pair, at least for the time being.
Meanwhile, uncertainty about the likely timing of the Fed's tapering plan and fading hopes for an early lift-off might continue to act as a headwind for the greenback. The market speculations were further fueled by Wednesday's disappointing release of the ADP report on the US private-sector employment in August.
Hence, the market focus remains on Friday's release of the closely-watched US monthly jobs data. The popularly known NFP report might provide fresh clues on when the Fed would begin rolling back its massive pandemic-era stimulus. This will influence the USD and provide a fresh directional impetus to the AUD/USD pair.
In the meantime, traders might take cues from Thursday's release of the usual Initial Weekly Jobless Claims data from the US, due later during the early North American session. Apart from this, a scheduled speech by Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic will also be looked upon for some trading opportunities around the AUD/USD pair.