Forex - Dollar gains on fears U.S. budget talks may collapse

Shutterstock photo - The dollar rose in a risk-off trading session on Friday after House Republicans late Thursday rejected a plan proposed by their leader in the House of Representatives to avoid the U.S. fiscal cliff.

In U.S. trading on Friday, EUR/USD was down 0.52% at 1.3174.

Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives canceled plans to vote on fiscal reforms proposed by Speaker John Boehner, himself a Republican, which called for tax hikes on incomes over USD1 million, well above a White House proposal calling for tax hikes on incomes topping USD400,000.

Dissent in Boehner's own party rattled nerves and stoked fears the U.S. will fail to reach a budgetary deal, which will allow tax breaks to expire for all Americans in 2013 and deep cuts to government spending to kick in at the same time, a combination known as a fiscal cliff that could tip the country into a recession next year.

The news overshadowed rather positive economic data.

The U.S. Census Bureau reported earlier that core durable goods orders, which exclude transportation items, rose 1.6% in November, beating market expectations for a 0.2% decline though down slightly from a 1.9% increase the previous month.

Durable goods orders rose by 0.7% last month, outpacing consensus forecasts for a 0.2% rise though down from a 1.1% increase in October.

Meanwhile, a separate Commerce Department report revealed that personal spending in the U.S. rose by 0.4% in November, beating expectations for a 0.3% rise and far outpacing 0.1% fall the previous month.

Also in the U.S. earlier, the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index slumped unexpectedly in December, possibly due to fears the U.S. will careen over the fiscal cliff.

The index dipped to 72.9 for December from 74.5 the previous month, missing analysts' call for an improvement to 74.7 this month.

In Europe, the Gfk research group reported that its index of Germany's consumer climate fell to 5.6 in December from 5.8 in November.

Analysts had expected the index to improve to 5.9 this month.

The greenback, meanwhile, was up against the pound, with GBP/USD trading down 0.71% at 1.6163.

In the U.K., official data earlier revealed that the economy grew less than anticipated in the third quarter, expanding 0.09%, missing market calls for a 1% rise.

A separate report showed that public sector net borrowing rose more than expected in November, gaining to GBP15.3 billion from GBP6 billion in October.

Analysts had expected public sector net borrowing to rise to GBP14.2 billion last month.

Elsewhere, the U.K. current account deficit narrowed to GBP12.8 billion in the third quarter from a deficit of GBP17.4 billion, beating expectations for a drop to GBP14 billion.

The dollar was down against the yen, with USD/JPY trading down 0.15% at 84.26 and up against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF trading up 0.56% at 0.9167.

The dollar was up against its cousins in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, with USD/CAD up 0.61% at 0.9938, AUD/USD down 0.79% at 1.0399 and NZD/USD trading down 1.23% at 0.8236.

The dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was up 0.50% at 79.69. - 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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