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Sterling top performing market currency this month

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Pound Sterling

The Pound is little changed against the Euro and US Dollar after economic data showed that employment confidence in the UK rose to a six-month high in April. The index rose from -45 in March to -41, marking its highest reading since October 2012.

So far this month Sterling has appreciated by 1.7%, making it the best performing currency among the world’s developed-market currencies.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ strengthened against the majority of its peers following last week’s positive labour data. The US economy created 165,000 jobs in April, a figure that beat economist expectations and boosted confidence in the global economy.

The Euro

The Euro weakened against the US Dollar after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said that the bank would consider making further interest rate cuts if the Eurozone economy does not show signs of improvement.

The rate is already at the record low level of 0.5% and any talk of further cuts caused investors to seek shelter in safe-havens due to the increased chance of the bank introducing negative rates.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ fell against the majority of its peers after the Reserve Bank of Australia lowered interest rates taking economists by surprise. The markets had been expecting the Bank to take no action. The RBA cut the rate by a quarter-point to 2.75% with the Bank’s governor Glenn Stevens citing soft economic growth, tame inflation and subdued credit demand for the need for the cut.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ held at a weekly high against the US Dollar after the strong jobs figures out of the US helped strengthen commodity prices and growth-linked currencies like the ‘Kiwi’. Against its Australian relation the currency weakened from its four-year high after the Reserve Bank of Australia surprised the markets and cut interest rates.

The next piece of important data for the ‘Kiwi’ is tomorrow’s release of the latest unemployment figures. Economists expect the jobless rate to have fallen to 6.8% from the previous months 6.9%.

Canadian Dollar

The ‘Loonie’ strengthened against almost all of its most-traded counterparts after a government report showed March building permits increased more than forecast. The currency has strengthened against other commodity based currencies such as the Australian and New Zealand Dollars. The currency has also been supported by a rise in the price of crude oil, Canada’s biggest export. The commodity rose in value to $95.79 per barrel.

South African Rand

The Rand has weakened due to the increased expectation that the nation’s Central Bank will cut interest rates. Data released yesterday showed that unemployment in South Africa increased to 25.2% in the first quarter of 2013. The disappointing figure combined with the other troubles plaguing the nation’s economy has caused investors to increase their bets of further rate cuts.

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