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The yen rose against all of its 16 most-traded counterparts amid investor concern that Chinese manufacturing was weaker as official government data conflicted with a private-sector purchasing-manager index. The Chinese purchasing manager’s index released yesterday by the country’s logistics federation and National Bureau of Statistics for March rose to a one-year high of 53.1. In contrast, a PMI from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics showed manufacturing contracting and export orders declining. The index fell to 48.3 in March from 49.6 the previous month. The Tankan index for Japan’s largest manufacturers was unchanged last quarter from minus 4 in December, the BOJ said today in Tokyo. A negative number means pessimists outnumber optimists.
Currencies of commodity-producing nations rallied against the dollar after a report showed manufacturing in the U.S. increased last month. Australia’s dollar had its biggest intraday gain versus the greenback in two months. The figures compare with a gain in the Institute for Supply Management’s U.S. factory index to 53.4 from 52.4 in February. Economists forecast an increase to 53. Fifty is the dividing line between growth and contraction. The Reserve Bank of Australia will hold a policy meeting tomorrow.
The euro may weaken to match the lowest level since September 2010 against the pound after failing to rise above 84 pence, Karen Jones, a technical strategist in London, wrote in an e-mailed note. Europe’s shared currency slipped against the dollar after euro-region unemployment rose to the highest level in more than 14 years and manufacturing contracted.
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