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UK economy showing steady growth

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Pound Sterling

The Pound is little changed against the US Dollar and Euro as the market awaits the beginning of the latest two-day Bank of England meeting to decide whether it will add more monetary stimulus to the UK economy. Yesterday, Sterling strengthened to its strongest level in a week against the Euro after a report showed that UK services expanded at a better-than-predicted rate. Economists are predicting that the Bank of England will opt to maintain the current level of stimulus.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ has weakened for a second day against the majority of its counterparts ahead of the release of the latest private jobs data which is expected to show an increase in the number of new jobs created. Thursday sees the Federal Reserve release its Beige Book report, its findings are sure to create volatility for the Dollar if it shows any sign of a slowdown of the US economy.

The Euro

The Euro is holding firm against the majority of its peers due to an improved appetite for riskier assets. Signs of a strengthening U.S. economy, continued support from the Federal Reserve, and plans for record Chinese government spending to sustain growth in China seem to have given investors fresh confidence to take risk.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ has strengthened against most of its major peers due to GDP data showing that Australia’s economy grew in the last quarter of 2012. The nation’s economy grew by 0.6% in the fourth quarter and on a year-by-year basis by 3.1%. The good figures have reduced the likelihood that the Reserve Bank of Australia will cut interest rates.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ followed its ‘Aussie’ relation upwards after the bigger Oceanic nation posted solid economic growth figures. The currency was also boosted by a

10% increase in New Zealand’s biggest export of dairy goods. Local dairy prices could continue to rise after the New Zealand government extended its drought-zone to cover most of New Zealand's North Island. The arid conditions prompted dairy companies to lower their forecast milk collection for the season, spurring demand.

Canadian Dollar

The ‘Loonie’ is little changed against its US counterpart ahead of the Bank of Canada’s latest benchmark rate decision. The Bank is expected to maintain the current rate of 1%. The currency could see rises later in the week as crude oil prices are set to rise.

South African Rand

The Rand weakened yesterday over renewed fears of further labour unrest across South Africa. Up to 6,000 workers staged an illegal strike at the Marikan mine, which was the site of deadly clashes between workers and police last year. Today the currency has recovered some strength against the US Dollar after the strikers returned to work. The Rand is vulnerable to any bad news out of Europe and is expected to remain volatile over the next few weeks.

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