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UK gives triple-dip the slip

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Pound Sterling

The Pound strengthened against the US Dollar and held steady against the Euro after the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) said that its monthly estimates of GDP suggest that the UK’s output increased by 0.1% in the first quarter of 2013. The production sectors output picked up sharply in February as the country recovered from the sharp drop experienced in January. If the figure is accurate then the UK will have avoided sliding into a triple-dip recession.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ remains weaker after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told a conference that economic conditions in the world’s largest economy are still far from where he wants them to be. The comments caused traders to increase their bets that further monetary easing will be implemented.

The Euro

The Euro has gained for a fifth day against the US Dollar, its longest winning streak of the year so far. The rise came after Europe’s bailout fund said that a bond sale attracted strong demand from investors. Concerns over Slovenia being the next Cyprus however could weaken the currency if investors grow nervous about a possible bailout.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ strengthened against the US Dollar and a number of its currency rivals after China (Australia’s biggest trading partner) posted better-than-expected import data. The currency soared to a high of 105.17 US cents after the Chinese data showed that its imports grew by 14.1%, more than double the predicted 6% rise made by economists.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ has remained strong against the US Dollar due to New Zealand’s trade prospects improving on the back of strong Chinese trade data. The currency managed to shrug off data showing that spending on electronic cards fell by 0.5% last month.

Canadian Dollar

The ‘Loonie’ has edged higher against the US Dollar as a lack of market-moving factors allowed it to maintain the gains it made overnight. A mixed reading of Canada's housing market failed to incite any reaction in the currency. Housing starts for March came in at 184,028 units, above expectations of 175,000, while monthly permits in February rose only by 1.7% in the month, under the 3.0% economists were expecting.

South African Rand

The Rand has climbed to its strongest level against the US Dollar in more than five weeks due to bond rally helping to prop up the South African currency. The next key piece of data for the currency is Thursday’s release of the latest manufacturing data which is expected to confirm that the nation’s economic recovery is stalling.