Major Asia Pacific currencies were holding at firmer levels during Thursday morning trading after the US Federal Reserve on Wednesday signalled a near-term rate rise at its latest meeting.

Minutes from the Fed’s October meeting released on Wednesday showed policymakers signalling that an increase in the US central bank’s target range would probably be needed “in the near term”.

Japan’s yen was 0.3 per cent stronger since the minutes’ release at ¥111.27 per dollar, while the Australian dollar was likewise 0.3 per cent stronger against its US counterpart at $0.7613 and while the euro was up 0.2 per cent at $1.1814.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of global peers, was down 0.2 per cent since the release of the minutes early on Thursday morning in Asia. The index had moved lower ahead of the release and was down as much as 0.8 per cent on the day.

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