Daily Afternoon Report 11.05.2015

The dollar remained broadly higher against a basket of other major currencies on Monday, as Friday’s U.S. employment data continued to lend broad support to the greenback and as trading was expected to remain quiet with no major U.S. data to be released throughout the day. The dollar remained supported after the Labor Department reported on Friday that the U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in April, just shy of economists forecast for 224,000. The unemployment rate ticked down from 5.5% to 5.4%, the lowest since May 2008. However, March’s payrolls report was revised to show that only 85,000 jobs were created, the fewest since June 2012. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was rose 0.36% to 95.24. The euro was lower, with EUR/USD down 0.50% to 1.1143. Sentiment on the single currency remained vulnerable as Greece and the euro zone were to hold a fresh round of talks later Monday as Athens scrambles to reach an agreement on a package of economic reforms in order to access fresh bailout funds. Ahead of the talks Greece’s government indicated that it was still hopeful that progress would be made but euro zone officials have indicated that too many issues still remain unresolved. Greece was due to repay approximately €770 to the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday. The pound was higher, with GBP/USD up 0.22% to 1.5490. In a widely anticipated decision, the Bank of England kept its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.50%, where it has been since March 2009, and maintained the stock of asset purchases financed by the issuance of central bank reserves at £375 billion. The pound had rallied to more than two-month highs against the dollar on Friday after Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative Party won a surprise majority in British elections. Elsewhere, the dollar was higher against the yen and the Swiss franc, with USD/JPY up 0.13% to 119.94 and with USD/CHF climbing 0.44% to 0.9338. The Australian and New Zealand dollars were weaker, with AUD/NZD down 0.45% to 0.7894 and NZD/USD tumbling 1.63% to 0.7372. Earlier Monday, the National Australia Bank reported that its business confidence index remained unchanged at 3 last month. Meanwhile, USD/CAD rose 0.36% to trade at 1.2115.

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