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US dollar strengthens on homes data

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by Elaine Frei

The US dollar strengthened on Wednesday, riding a roller coaster as new data was released. There were declines on the news that US durable goods orders had grown as much as had been hoped, but higher than expected new home sales sent the dollar back up.

By mid-session in New York, the greenback had gained 0.3 percent versus the euro to $1.2780, while it added 0.6 percent in relation to the Swiss franc to SFr1.2150 and was up 0.7 percent against the Japanese yen to ¥112.67.

In Europe, the Ifo business climate survey dropped to 105.6 in May, down from 105.9 in April. Still, it was higher than the 105.3 that had been predicted for May. Analysts felt that this outcome hinted that industrial production will see further growth in the region.

The new data saw the euro gain 0.3 percent versus the Swiss franc to SFr1.5530, while the shared currency added 0.4 percent in relation to the yen to ¥144.03.

Sterling was lower on the day after the CBI industrial trends survey showed that manufacturer sentiment had declined. The British currency dropped 0.2 percent versus the euro to £0.6835 while it lost 0.5 percent to the US dollar to $1.8710.

Meanwhile, some emerging currencies were hurt by new concerns over the possible spread of bird flu. The South Korean won dropped 0.7 percent to Won 950.00 versus the US dollar, while the Indonesian rupiah declined by 1.1 percent to Rp9,360 and the Turkish lira lost 3.5 percent to TL1,5450, the lowest it has been in two years.

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News posted: May 24, 2006

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