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The U.S. dollar higher to mixed against the most major currencies after the better-than-expected number of initial jobless claims in the U.S. The number of initial jobless in the week ending August 2 dropped by 14,000 to 289,000 from the previous week's figure of 303,000. Analysts had expected the number of initial jobless claims to climb by 2,000 to 305,000. The previous week's figure was revised down from 302,000.
The euro fell against the U.S. dollar after the European Central Bank's decision and ECB's press conference. The ECB kept its interest rate unchanged at 0.15%. This decision was expected by market participants.
The ECB President Mario Draghi said that the central bank "intensified" preparation for an Asset Backed Securities (ABS) program. This program should be launched if necessary.
The ECB President reiterated that interest rates will remain at low levels "for an extended period of time" and the ECB could launch unconventional measures to tackle low inflation.
Mr. Draghi warned that tensions between Russia and the EU over Ukraine may affect the economic recovery in the EU.
Germany's industrial production climbed 0.3% in June, after a 1.7% decline in May, but missing expectations for a 1.4% rise. May's figure was revised up from a 1.8% fall.
France's trade deficit widened to 5.4 billion euro in June from a deficit of 5.1 billion euro in May, missing forecasts of a decline to 5.0 billion euro deficit. May's figure was revised down from a deficit of 4.9 billion euro.
The British pound traded mixed against the U.S. dollar after the Bank of England's interest decision. The BoE kept its interest rate at 0.50%. This decision was expected by analysts.
The BoE's asset purchase facility program remained at £375 billion. This decision was also expected by analysts.
The Swiss franc traded lower against the U.S. dollar. Switzerland's foreign currency reserves increased to 453.4 billion Swiss francs in July from 449.6 billion in June.
SECO consumer climate index declined to -1 in the second quarter from 1 in the previous quarter, missing expectations for a rise to 4.
The Canadian dollar traded mixed against the U.S. dollar after the better-than-expected economic data from Canada. The Ivey purchasing managers' index for Canada jumped to 54.1 in July from 46.9 in June, in line with expectations.
Canada's building permits increased 13.5% in June, beating expectations for a 1.8% fall, after a 15.4 rise in May. May's figure was revised up from a 13.8% gain.
The New Zealand dollar traded slightly higher against the U.S dollar in the absence of any major economic reports in New Zealand.
The Australian dollar traded lower against the U.S. dollar after the weak labour market data from Australia. The number of employed people in Australia declined by 300 in July, missing expectations for a rise of 13,500, after an increase of 14,900 in June. June's figure was revised down from a 15,900 rise.
Australia's unemployment rate climbed to 6.4% in July from 6.0% in June. Analysts had expected the unemployment rate to remain unchanged.
The Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Australian performance of construction index rose to 52.6 in July from 51.8 in June.
The Japanese yen traded higher against the U.S. dollar. In the overnight trading session, the Japanese yen declined against the U.S. dollar after Reuters reported today that Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) plans to buy more domestic stocks. GPIF's target is over 20% of funds in domestic stocks (current target: 12%).
No major economic reports were released in Japan.
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