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Rand fell more than 24% against the dollar last year

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Pound Sterling

The Pound climbed against the Euro ahead of the release of a report which showed that manufacturing expanded in December, giving further support to the UK’s economic recovery. Against the US Dollar the Pound was little changed after data showed that over $1 billion of mortgages had been sought by buyers, bolstering the nation’s housing market.

US Dollar

The US Dollar was higher against the single currency as it remains supported by the Federal Reserve’s decision to begin tapering its monetary easing programme this month. The ‘Greenback’ was also supported after the Conference Board said on Tuesday that its index of U.S. consumer confidence improved to 78.1 in December from 72.0 in November. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 76.0 this month.

The Euro

The Euro remained softer against the Pound and other peers despite manufacturing data out of the Eurozone coming in at expected levels. Italy and Germany both posted better-than-expected figures but France held back gains as its PMI came in worse-than-expected.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ is trading lower against the Pound and US Dollar after data out of Australia’s biggest trading partner, China came in unchanged from its previous reading. The currency was also weakened after domestic data showed that Australia’s manufacturing output fell at the end of 2013.

New Zealand Dollar

The New Zealand Dollar remains mixed against its peers as it continues to suffer from a lack of new data releases over the holiday period and muted trading in the markets. The ‘Kiwi’ will probably drift lower against the Pound and US Dollar until trading picks up next week.

Canadian Dollar

The Canadian Dollar ended 2013 making its worst yearly performance since 2008. Economists are expecting the ‘Loonie’ to fall further in 2014 as the Bank of Canada takes a dovish approach to the currency. Trading is light due to a lack of economic data.

South African Rand

The South African Rand tumbled against the Pound and US Dollar and made one of the steepest global losses of 2013 in a year in which labour unrest weighed on investor sentiment. The Rand fell more than 24% against the dollar last year, weighed down mainly by negative sentiment over strikes that hit manufacturing and mining output in Africa's biggest economy.

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