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The euro exchange rate has risen sharply against the U.S. dollar , which was associated with the release of weak U.S. data and Fed chief comments . It is learned that orders for durable goods (products designed for the life of three years or more ) fell to a seasonally adjusted 1% from December . This is the second consecutive decline after orders fell 4.2 % in December. But excluding the volatile transportation category , orders rose by 1.1 % last month , showing the strongest growth since May. Economists forecast that overall orders for durable goods fell 0.7% in January.
Meanwhile, another report showed that the number of initial claims for unemployment benefits rose by 14,000 and amounted to a seasonally adjusted 348,000 in the week ended February 22. The figure for the previous week was revised down to 334,000 from 336,000 . Economists had predicted that jobless drop to 333,000 . The four-week moving average of claims remained unchanged last week at 338,250 . Analyst Department of Labor said that there were no special factors that could affect the data last week.
As for the speech of the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Janet Yellen , she noted : the Fed will continue to reduce the amount of quantitative easing (QE), despite the fact that the recovery of the U.S. labor market is still far from complete. Yellen also reiterated statements made on February 11 at the House of Representatives . Initially, her performance in the Senate Banking Committee to be held on February 13 , but was postponed due to inclement weather .
Furthermore Yellen confirmed that the base rate is likely to be maintained at the current level ( 0-0.25 %) for a long time after the U.S. unemployment rate falls below 6.5% , while maintaining the inflation forecast is not above the level of 2.5 %. She noted that the decision on the rate of reduction of volumes of quantitative easing are not predefined and the FOMC will be taken depending on the assessment of the situation on the labor market and inflation.
The Canadian dollar fell slightly against the U.S. dollar , which was associated with the release of data on the balance of payments . As it became known , the current account deficit widened in Canada in the fourth quarter of 2013 and the fourth largest in history, mainly due to a higher deficit in trade in goods . The current account deficit rose to a seasonally adjusted 16.01 billion Canadian dollars ( $ 14.39 billion ) , compared with a revised deficit in the third quarter at 14.80 billion Canadian dollars . Deficit in the previous quarter originally estimated at 15.47 billion Canadian dollars . Economists had expected a deficit of $ 16.5 billion Canadian dollars .
BMO Capital Markets experts believe that the recent period of large current account deficits provides evidence that the Canadian dollar was overvalued in recent years. The recent weakening of the currency is expected to gradually lead to a smaller current account deficit in 2014.
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