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US dollar strengthens as dark clouds in Washington begin to lift

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US dollar strengthens as dark clouds in Washington begin to lift

The US dollar advanced against a basket of its major competitors as Senate leaders continue to piece together a bipartisan plan to lift the budget impasse and get the government back in session.
The greenback advanced more than 0.3 percent, sending the US Dollar Index to 80.50. Support for the safe haven currency is mobilizing as Democrats and Republicans continue to clear hurdles on their way to the ending the first government shutdown in 17 years. Both sides have mere hours to put together a plan that saves the United States from becoming the first country since Nazi Germany to cease payments on long-term debts.

In North America, the Canadian dollar fell off its one-week high against its southern counterpart. The USDCAD gained a quarter percent to 1.0375. The loonie was relatively idle Monday as Canada celebrated Thanksgiving Day. On Friday the Bank of Canada will release data on consumer inflation.

Europe’s common currency fell almost half a percent against the dollar following a mixed batch of ZEW data. The economic sentiment survey, which measures the confidence levels and outlook of institutional investors, fell below expectations for the euro area, with a reading of 59.1. Germany’s economic sentiment indicator beat expectations by more than three points with a reading of 52.8. Investors’ assessment of Germany’s current situation was however much weaker.

Elsewhere in Europe, the British pound failed to rebound from last week’s fall, which pulled the GBPUSD back down from the 1.61-1.62 region. Britain’s Office for National Statistics reported higher-than-forecasted consumer inflation for the month of September. The Consumer Price Index advanced 0.4 percent in September and at an annualized rate of 2.7 percent.

The US dollar has been without several pieces of important data, as the ongoing budget impasse has suspended operations across key federal departments. A lifting of the impasse before Thursday could reopen the government and bring the flow of data back to the markets.

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