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Forex - GBP/USD hits session highs after U.K. services PMI

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Investing.com - The pound rose to session highs against the dollar on Tuesday after data showed that activity in the U.K. service sector rose to a five-month high in February, allaying fears over a triple-dip recession.

GBP/USD hit 1.5199 during European morning trade, the pair's highest since February 28; the pair subsequently consolidated at 1.5159, gaining 0.31%.

Cable was likely to find support at 1.5103, the session low and resistance at 1.5272, the high of February 21.

The Markit services purchasing managers' index rose to 51.8 last month from 51.5 in January, compared to expectations for a decline to 51.0.

The data eased concerns over a possible triple-dip recession after data on Monday showed that the U.K. construction sector contracted last month. The U.K.'s manufacturing sector also contracted unexpectedly in February.

Investors were looking ahead to the outcome of the Bank of England's policy meeting on Thursday, amid speculation over whether the bank will resume its asset purchase program.

Sterling was lower against the euro, with EUR/GBP down 0.20% to 0.8601.

In the euro zone, official data showed that retail sales rose 1.2% in January, well above expectations for a 0.2% gain.

Earlier in the session data showed that Germany's services purchasing managers' index rose to 54.7 in February, up from a preliminary reading of 54.1. The final French services PMI came in at 43.7, better than a preliminary estimate of 42.7.

The final euro zone services PMI rose to 47.9 from a preliminary reading of 47.3.

The Institute of Supply Management was to release a report on U.S. service sector activity later Tuesday.

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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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