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Pound Sterling

The Pound is little changed against the US Dollar and the Euro due to the markets waiting to see the outcome of the latest Bank of England policy meeting. The Bank is expected to maintain its asset purchasing target at £375billion, and keep interest rates at the historically low-level of 0.5%. Sterling remained just above a one-month low against the Euro despite Chancellor George Osborne giving a gloomy autumn budget statement yesterday. The Pound could see some volatility today as traders raise bets that the Bank could be considering more monetary easing in a bid to boost the country’s economy.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ made losses against the Japanese Yen, but made gains against the Euro as the markets took a more risk adverse approach to trading yesterday. Disappointing data out of Europe and the United States caused demand for safe-haven currencies to increase.

Dollar traders should be aware of the latest weekly unemployment claims figures, a worse than expected figure will see the Dollar rise but a result higher than the expected increase of 382,000 could cause losses.

The Euro

The Euro has plummeted from a seven-week high against the US Dollar and fell against the majority of its 16 major peers. The weakening comes ahead of the release of a report that is expected to show how much the currency bloc’s economy has contracted adding to concerns that the Euro crisis is far from over. Worse-than-expected retail sales data did little to prevent investors seeking safe-havens in the US and Japan. Today Euro traders should be aware of the European Central Banks press conference this afternoon. Any sign that the European economy’s recovery is stalling will cause the Euro to fall further.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ recovered some of yesterday’s losses after the release of stronger-than-expected employment figures for November boosted investor confidence in the country’s economy. The Australian Bureau of Statistics said that the jobless rate fell to 5.2% from the 5.4% seen in October. Economists had been expecting the figure to rise to 5.5%. As the year draws to an end the amount of domestic data is beginning to thin. Instead the currency will be impacted by events elsewhere, especially the ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations in the USA and the ongoing Eurozone crisis.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ is trading higher today due to the currency receiving a lift when Reserve Bank of New Zealand Governor Graeme Wheeler maintained the nation’s cash rate at 2.5% and ruled out an interest rate cut. As a result the ‘Kiwi’ rose to a four-week high against the US Dollar making it the strongest performing currency so far this week.

Canadian Dollar

The Canadian Dollar ended the day higher yesterday after an increase in the price of some commodities and increased optimism that the new Chinese government will do more to support the global economy. The cause for the optimism across the markets was a Chinese government pledge that it will maintain the policies intended to strengthen the economy and a willingness to make them more effective.

The price of crude oil fell slightly but copper and other metals increased in value supporting the Canadian currency.

South African Rand

The Rand is expected to struggle over the coming weeks as the markets remain unsure of the viability of the currency. The currency is struggling to recover after last week’s report that showed the nation’s trade deficit widened more-than-expected and the key mining sector struggles. The Rand often strengthens at the end of the year but risk over the ruling party the ANC‘s elections has dampened sentiment.

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