The U.S. dollar reigned over its peers on Friday, gaining for a third straight day, despite dismal monthly jobs data.
The dollar’s safe-haven appeal tilted the scale in its favour and most of the major currencies were notably down against it despite recovering a good portion of ground they had lost earlier in the day.
Mounting worries about surging coronavirus infections across the globe and weak economic data out of Europe supported the dollar’s uptick.
According to the new tally from Johns Hopkins University, more than a million people have been diagnosed with the novel coronavirus across the world.
The dollar index rose to 100.85 around noon, and later eased to 100.64, still up nearly 0.5% from previous close.
Against the Euro, the dollar strengthened to 1.0774 before giving up some gains as it eased to 1.0811, still well off previous session’s close of $1.0857. The euro area private sector logged its biggest monthly fall on record in March as the coronavirus disease, or covid-19, pandemic impacted heavily on economic activity, final data from IHS Markit showed Friday.
The final composite output index fell sharply to 29.7 in March from 51.6 in February. This was also weaker than the flash estimate of 31.4.
Both services and manufacturing sectors recorded notable declines in output in March.
The pound sterling was weak as well against the dollar. After dropping to $1.2205, the sterling recovered to $1.2276, compared with yesterday’s close of $1.2395. The UK service sector registered its steepest downturn in more than two decades in March due to business shutdowns and order cancellation in response to the coronavirus, or covid-19, pandemic.
Against the Yen, the dollar firmed up with each unit fetching 108.45 yen, about 0.52% more than a session earlier.
The loonie was weaker by at 1.4171 a dollar. Swiss franc and the Aussie weakened to 0.9769 and 1.6700, respectively, against the dollar.
The report from the Labor Department said employment plunged by 701,000 jobs in March after jumping by an upwardly revised 275,000 jobs in February.
Economists had expected employment to slump by 100,000 jobs compared to the addition of 273,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.
With the much bigger than expected drop in employment, the unemployment rate surged up to 4.4% in March from 3.5% in February. The unemployment rate had been expected to climb to 3.8%.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com