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Dollar at a two and a half year high over Japanese Yen

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Pound Sterling

The Pound has weakened for a second day against the US Dollar falling to a three-week low as investors await the outcome of the latest UK service sector data. Economists are expecting the sector to show modest signs of expansion, if so then the Pound could recover slightly against the US currency. An unexpected contraction, however, could deepen the Pound's losses.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ has hit a two-and-a-half year high against the Japanese Yen and strengthened to a three-week high against the Euro. The strengthening comes after the markets continue to opt for safe haven currencies as they worry about future US budgetary negotiations. The release of the Federal Reserve minutes also contributed to the demand for the safe-haven Dollar after several policy makers appeared to be concerned over further monetary easing measures.

Today, Dollar traders should be aware of the release of the latest US jobs data, set to be released this afternoon. Analysts are predicting that up to 135,000 new jobs were created in December. If the indicator comes in below the expected level, safe-haven currencies like the Dollar and Yen could see bullish movement before the markets close for the weekend.

The Euro

The Euro has taken losses against several of its currency rivals due to new fears that the US government will soon reach its ‘debt ceiling’ and create risk aversion in the markets. Euro traders will want to pay close attention to today's US Non-Farm payrolls report.

A better-than-expected figure should generate risk taking in the marketplace, which could help the Euro recoup some of its recent losses. In addition, Italian and Spanish service data could benefit the common-currency if they come in above their expected levels.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ has fallen against the US Dollar due to declines in Australia’s and China’s service-industry indexes. China, Australia’s biggest trade partner posted a PMI decrease of 51.7 in December, down from the 52.1 in November. Australia also posted a decline with its services sector shrinking for an 11th straight month with a reading of 43.2 in December, down from 47.1 in November.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ has extended its declines against the US Dollar due to the latest minutes from the Federal Reserve's monetary policy review showing that some policy makers want to stop printing money as early as this year. The currency was also affected by the disappointing PMI data out of China and Australia.

Canadian Dollar

The ‘Loonie’ has fallen to a two-week low against its US counterpart due to the US Federal Reserve revealing that it may end monetary stimulus as early as

this year. Against the Euro and Pound the Canadian Dollar strengthened ahead of the release of the latest jobs data out of the US.

South African Rand

The Rand weakened after the Euro came under pressure following the release of the latest US Federal Reserve minutes that revealed that some policy makers wanted to end monetary easing in the world’s biggest economy. The Rand is expected to weaken further before the day is out.

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