Dollar falls on housing data, Britain inflation

08:22, May 18, 2011      

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The U.S. dollar fell against major currencies in late New York trading on Tuesday as U.S. construction of new homes fell in April and Britain's consumer prices rose in April.

The U.S. Commerce Department reported Tuesday that housing starts dropped 10.6 percent to an annual rate of 523,000 in April, suggesting that the recovery of housing market still was not in good shape.

Jean-Claude Juncker, chairman of the 17-country Eurogroup, who also chaired the two-day meetings of euro-zone finance ministers, said Tuesday that Greece could see a "soft restructuring" if it undertook major reforms and accelerated plans to privatize state holdings. His comments helped bolster the euro.

Meanwhile, Britain's Office for National Statistics said annual consumer price inflation jumped to 4.5 percent in April from 4 percent in March, raising concerns that the Bank of England might raise interest rates to curb inflation. The British pound was lifted by the expectations in Tuesday's trading session.

In late Tuesday trading, the dollar bought 81.43 yen, comparing with 80.84 late Monday, and the euro rose to 1.4229 dollars from 1. 4192.

The British pound also rose to 1.6251 dollars from 1.6211. The dollar fell from 0.8832 to 0.8807 against Swiss francs, and also fell to 0.9729 Canadian dollars from 0.9732.

Source: Xinhua
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