The dollar edged lower against a basket of the other major currencies on Thursday after disappointing data on U.S. private sector hiring, while slightly more hawkish European Central Bank minutes supported the euro.
U.S. private employers added 158,000 jobs in June, well below economists’ expectations, a report by a payrolls processor ADP showed.
The ADP figures come ahead of the U.S. Labor Department’s more comprehensive non-farm payrolls report on Friday which is expected to show jobs growth of 179,000 in June.
A separate report showed that initial jobless claims unexpectedly rose by 4,000 to 248,000 last week.
Another report showed that the U.S. trade deficit narrowed in May as exports increased.
The data came after Wednesday’s minutes of the Fed’s June meeting showed a lack of consensus among policymakers over the outlook for inflation and how it could impact on the future pace of interest rate increases.
The Fed hiked rates at its June meeting and stuck to its forecast for one more rate hike this year and three in 2018, but the subdued inflation outlook has since raised doubts over whether the Fed will be able to stick to its planned tightening path.
The single currency was boosted after the minutes of the European Central Bank’s June meeting showed that officials discussed removing the easing bias from its latest monetary policy statement, before deciding against it.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.24% to 95.74 by 08.46 AM ET (12.46 GMT), pulling further away from Wednesday’s one week highs of 96.25.