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US dollar slightly up after jobless claims report

Daily Currency Update

Demand for the US dollar ticked marginally higher against a basket of currencies on Thursday after data showed US weekly jobless claims fell to a 52-year low. The US Dollar Index was up 0.45% trading at around 96.32 at the time of writing.

Unemployment claims in the US dropped to 184,000 last week, the lowest level since September 1969, according to the Labor Department. The four-week moving average dropped below 219,000, the lowest level since March 2020 when COVID-19 hit the US.

However, tomorrow's US consumer price index (CPI) number, a key inflation reading, is set to be the week's main event. A strong print could accelerate expectations for the US Federal Reserve to start hiking rates or be more aggressive in tapering its bond-buying.

Key Movers

EURUSD edged lower on Thursday on the back of the dollar's small gains. Germany saw its new Chancellor, Olaf Sholz, sworn in on Wednesday ending Angela Merkel’s 16 years at the helm of the world’s fourth largest economy. Sholz comes to power as Germany is hit by another wave of COVID-19 with daily deaths recently posting their highest number since February. Despite a relatively high uptake of vaccines there is still a large number of the population who remain unvaccinated which is heaping pressure on the local health system.  EURUSD was down 0.47%, sitting around 1.2882 at the time of writing.

GBPUSD fell to its lowest level since November 2020 on Thursday, after the UK Government unexpectedly confirmed that England would be put under tighter restrictions in an effort to combat the COVID-19 Omicron variant. The new restrictions could lower expectations for the Bank of England to raise interest rates as early as next week, which could put more pressure on the pound. Expectations that the BoE would raise rates soon has helped buoy the pound in recent months.

AUDUSD pulled back from its recovery on Thursday, trading around 0.71466 at the time of writing. The Canadian dollar also moved lower against its US counterpart as the US dollar saw a bit of strength this morning. USDCAD was up 0.37% at around 1.2696 at the time of writing.

Expected Ranges

  • EUR/USD: 1.1279 - 1.1354 ▼
  • GBP/USD: 1.3182 - 1.3242 ▲
  • AUD/USD: 0.7139 - 0.7187 ▼
  • USD/CAD: 1.2638 - 1.2713 ▲
  • USD/MXN: 20.927 - 21.048 ▲