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Dollar mixed to higher vs. rivals after downbeat U.S. data

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Shutterstock photo - The U.S. dollar was mixed to higher against the other major currencies on Friday, after the release of downbeat U.S. trade balance data, although Thursday's comments by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi continued to support demand for the euro.

During U.S. morning trade, the dollar was sharply lower against the euro, with EUR/USD climbing 0.61% to 1.3353.

The euro remained supported after ECB President Draghi said on Thursday that a gradual economic recovery would begin this year, as structural reforms and actions by the ECB to tackle the region's debt crisis continued to take effect.

The comments came after the ECB left interest rates on hold at 0.75% in a widely anticipated decision earlier, but some market participants had expected Draghi to hint at the possibility of rate cuts later in 2013.

The greenback was higher against the pound, with GBP/USD falling 0.18% to 1.6139.

Official data earlier showed that manufacturing production in the U.K. fell unexpectedly in November, ticking down 0.03% after a 1.3% decline the previous month.

Analysts had expected manufacturing production to rise 0.5% in November.

In addition, industrial production in the U.K. rose 0.3% in November, less than the expected 0.8% increase, after a 0.9% fall the previous month.

Elsewhere, the greenback was higher against the yen, with USD/JPY advancing 0.38% to trade at 89.15, but lower against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF slipping 0.24% to 0.9119.

The yen came under pressure after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe unveiled a JPY10.3 trillion stimulus package to end deflation and boost growth.

According to the Cabinet Office, about JPY3.8 trillion will go to disaster prevention and reconstruction, with JPY3.1 trillion directed to stimulating private investment and other measures.

In addition, official data showed that Japan posted a current account deficit of JPY222.4 billion in November, the first deficit in 10 months and far larger than the expected JPY3.5 billion deficit.

Earlier in the day, the Federal Statistical Office said that consumer price inflation in Switzerland slipped 0.2% in November, disappointing expectations for a 0.1% rise, after a 0.3% fall the previous month.

The greenback was higher against its Canadian, Australian and New Zealand counterparts, with USD/CAD inching up 0.08% to 0.9842, AUD/USD dropping 0.54% to 1.0540 and NZD/USD retreating 0.97% to 0.8374.

In Canada, official data showed that the trade widened to CAD2 billion in November from a deficit of CAD0.6 billion the previous month, more than the expected CAD1 billion deficit.

The dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was down 0.32% to 79.58.

In the U.S., official data earlier showed that the trade deficit widened unexpectedly in November, rising to USD48.7 billion from a deficit of 42.1 billion the previous month.

Analysts had expected the trade deficit to narrow to USD41.3 billion in November. - 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.

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