Dollar broadly higher vs. rivals as U.S. worries dominate

Shutterstock photo - The U.S. dollar was broadly higher against the other major currencies on Friday, as comments by Federal Reserve officials coupled with U.S. debt concerns weighed on demand for riskier assets.

During European morning trade, the dollar was higher against the euro, with EUR/USD falling 0.25% to 1.3017.

The euro was little changed after a report by Markit research group showed that Spain's service sector purchasing managers' index improved to 44.3 in December from a reading of 42.4 the previous month, beating expectations for a rise to 42.8.

The report came after official data showed that retail sales in Germany rose by 1.2% in November, beating expectations for a 0.8% increase, after a 1.3% decline the previous month.

Also Friday, preliminary data showed that consumer price inflation in the euro zone remained unchanged at an annualized rated of 2.2% last month. Analysts had expected consumer price inflation to tick down to 2.1% in December.

Markets were jittery after the minutes of the Fed's December policy meeting showed that officials began debating an end to bond-buying as early as this year even while preparing to boost stimulus to a new record.

Investors also remained cautious over the longer term outlook in the U.S., with negotiations on raising the debt ceiling still to come in February.

The greenback was also higher against the pound, with GBP/USD dropping 0.30% to 1.6059.

Earlier in the day, Markit said that the U.K. service sector purchasing managers' index deteriorated to 48.9 in December from a reading of 50.2 the previous month, falling back into contraction territory for the first time since January 2011.

Analysts had expected the index to tick up to 50.4 last month.

Elsewhere, the greenback was higher against the yen and the Swiss franc, with USD/JPY climbing 0.69% to trade at 87.84 and USD/CHF rising 0.20% to 0.9287.

The greenback was higher against its Canadian, Australian and New Zealand counterparts, with USD/CAD adding 0.16% to 0.9894, AUD/USD sliding 0.31% to 1.0435 and NZD/USD retreating 0.53% to 0.8237.

The dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was up 0.41% to 80.89.

Later in the day, the U.S. was to produce official data on nonfarm payrolls and the overall unemployment rate. In addition, the Institute of Supply Management was to release a report on service sector activity. - offers an extensive set of professional tools for the Forex, Commodities, Futures and the Stock Market including real-time data streaming, a comprehensive economic calendar, as well as financial news and technical & fundamental analysis by in-house experts.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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