Dollar trades mixed as euro surges

12:55, January 15, 2011      

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The U.S. dollar traded mixed against major currencies in late New York trading on Friday, while the euro climbed after a string of successful securities auctions by indebted eurozone nations.

The euro earlier hit just above 1.3450 against the dollar on Friday, edging closer to key resistance at 1.35, its December high.

Analysts said the euro's recovery could continue in the near term after successful bonds auctions by Portugal, Spain and Italy.

Over the week, the euro gained about 3.5 percent against the dollar, the biggest gain since May 2009.

U.S. data on Friday showed a lower-than-expected retail sales gain and a fall in consumer sentiment, which added pressure to the dollar.

The Commerce Department said retail sales climbed 0.6 percent in December, lower than analysts' expectation of a 0.8-percent rise.

Meanwhile, the preliminary Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index fell to 72.7 from 74.5 in December, as against economists' forecast of a rise to 76.

In late Friday trading, the dollar bought 82.99 Japanese yen, comparing with 82.74 late Thursday, and the euro rose to 1.3360 dollars from 1.3350.

The British pound also rose to 1.5881 dollars from 1.5843. The dollar rose from 0.9634 to 0.9650 against the Swiss franc, and also rose to 0.9895 Canadian dollars from 0.9894.

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