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Einhorn’s Greenlight Fund Slumps 6.1% in July Amid Gold Rout

Greenlight Capital, the hedge-fund firm led by David Einhorn, fell 6.1 percent in July as the Greek debt crisis, volatile stock markets in China, and plunging prices of gold and oil rocked markets.
The decline brought losses in Greenlight’s main fund to 9 percent in 2015, according to an e-mail sent to clients that was obtained by Bloomberg News.
Einhorn’s fund, which mainly bets on stocks, is trailing the equities market and many of his peers this year. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 2.1 percent in July, including reinvested dividends, and has gained 3.4 percent in 2015. The HFRX Global Hedge Fund Index is up 1.2 percent this year through July 30.
Jonathan Gasthalter, a spokesman for New York-based Greenlight with Sard Verbinnen & Co., declined to comment on the performance.
Greenlight’s top six disclosed long bets at the end of the second quarter fell last month, including Apple Inc., General Motors Co. and Micron Technology Inc. Coal and natural gas producer Consol Energy Inc. plunged 24 percent in July even as Greenlight disclosed in a regulatory filing that it had increased its stake to 12.9 percent of the company. SunEdison Inc., the world’s biggest clean-energy developer, lost 22 percent during the period.
Gold Rout
Gold bullion, also one of Greenlight’s top long positions, fell 6.5 percent in July to $1,095.80 an ounce. The precious metal accounted for almost 10 percent of the investment portfolio at Greenlight’s publicly traded reinsurer as of March 31.
Shares of Greenlight Capital Re Ltd., which gives retail and institutional investors a chance to bet on Einhorn’s hedge fund strategies, lost 4.6 percent in July and have fallen 15 percent this year. The company will report second-quarter earnings on Aug. 3.
Einhorn’s recent slump stands out because of Greenlight’s historic returns. The firm’s main hedge fund gained an average of 19 percent per year from its inception in May 1996 through the end of last year. He shot to further prominence for betting against Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. before the bank’s collapse in 2008.
Einhorn told investors in January that he was giving up his aim of earning 20 percent per year, to account for lower interest rates and the record prices of stocks, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

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Dollar Regains Some Of Its Early Losses

The dollar pulled back against its major competitors in early trade Friday, but has since reclaimed some of its lost ground. There were a pair of U.S. economic reports released this morning, but the results proved mixed.

After two months of contraction, MNI Indicators released a report on Friday showing that Chicago-area business activity expanded far more than expected in July.

MNI Indicators said its Chicago Business Barometer jumped to 54.7 in July from 49.4 in June, with a reading above 50 indicating growth in regional business activity. Economists had expected the index to show a more modest increase to 50.5.

Consumer sentiment in the U.S. pulled back by more than previously estimated in the month of July, according to a report released by the University of Michigan on Friday. The report said the consumer sentiment index for July was downwardly revised to 93.1 from the mid-month reading of 93.3. With the downward revision, the index was even further below the final June reading of 96.1

The downward revision came as surprise to economists, who had expected the index to be upwardly revised to 94.1.

The dollar dropped to nearly a 1-week low of $1.1113 against the Euro Friday morning, but has since rebounded to around $1.10.

Eurozone inflation remained stable at 0.2 percent in July, flash data from Eurostat showed Friday. Inflation has stayed in positive territory for the third straight month and July's rate matched economists' expectations.

The euro area unemployment rate remained unchanged in June at the lowest level seen since early 2012, Eurostat reported Friday. The jobless rate held steady at 11.1 percent in June, unchanged from May. This was the lowest rate recorded in the euro area since March 2012. The rate was forecast to drop to 11 percent.

Germany's retail sales declined unexpectedly in June after rising in the previous two months, preliminary figures from Destatis showed Friday.

Retail sales fell a calendar and seasonally adjusted 2.3 percent month-on-month in June, in contrast to a 0.4 percent rise in May. Economists had expected a 0.3 percent increase for the month. It was the first fall in three months.

French consumer spending increased for the third straight month in June at the fastest pace in five months, largely led by robust food consumption, the statistical office Insee reported Friday. Consumer spending rose 0.4 percent month-on-month in June, while economists had expected a 0.5 percent increase. In May, spending has risen 0.1 percent, the same rate of growth in April.


France's producer prices continued to decline in June, figures from the statistical office Insee showed Friday. Producer prices in the domestic market fell 1.9 percent year-over-year in June. Prices in the total industry dropped 1.4 percent, while foreign market prices rose by 0.2 percent.

The buck fell to a 2-day low of $1.5677 against the pound sterling this morning, but has since bounced back to around $1.5630.

Consumer confidence in the United Kingdom stalled in June, the latest survey from polling firm GfK revealed on Friday with an index score of +4. That missed forecasts for +5 and was down from +7 in June.

The greenback slipped to a 2-day low of Y123.516 against the Japanese Yen Friday, but has since climbed back to around Y123.875.

The unemployment rate in Japan came in at a seasonally adjusted 3.4 percent in June, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday. That was above forecasts for 3.3 percent, which would have been unchanged from the May reading.

The average of household spending in Japan was down 2.0 percent on year in June, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday - standing at 268,652 yen. That was well shy of forecasts for an increase of 1.9 percent following the 4.8 percent spike in May.

Consumer prices in Japan gained 0.4 percent on year in June, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday. That beat expectations for an increase of 0.3 percent, although it slowed from 0.5 percent in May.

Japan's housing starts growth accelerated sharply and construction orders rebounded in June, data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism showed Friday. Housing starts logged a double-digit growth of 16.3 percent in June, after increasing 5.8 percent in May. The annual growth was forecast to slow to 3 percent.

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Dollar Climbing As GDP Shows Continued Improvement

The dollar is gaining ground against all of its major competitors Thursday, after U.S. GDP showed continued improvement. The rise in GDP has investors feeling confident that the U.S. Federal Reserve will stay on track to raise interest rates in September.

Economic activity in the U.S. increased by less than expected in the second quarter, the Commerce Department revealed in a report on Thursday, although the report also showed a notable upward revision to the data for the first quarter.

The Commerce Department said real gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 2.3 percent in the second quarter compared to expectations for an increase of about 2.6 percent.

However, the report also said first quarter GDP rose by an upwardly revised 0.6 percent compared to the 0.2 percent contraction previously reported.

First-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits rebounded in the week ended July 25th, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday, with claims bouncing off the more than forty-year low set in the previous week.

The report said initial jobless claims climbed to 267,000, an increase of 12,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 255,000. Economists had expected claims to rise to about 272,000.

The Federal Reserve was noncommittal in yesterday's monetary policy statement. The statement included some subtle changes that point toward a near-term interest rate hike, but the Fed did not provide a specific timetable.

Analysts highlighted the inclusion of the word "some" in the Fed's assessment that it would be appropriate to raise rates "when it has seen some further improvement in the labor market."

The dollar hovered around the $1.0970 level against the Euro Thursday morning, but has since broken out to a 1-week high of $1.0915.

Eurozone economic confidence rose unexpectedly to a four-year high in July and businesses became more upbeat after the threat of Grexit diminished, survey results from European Commission showed Thursday.


The economic sentiment index climbed to 104 in July. A similar reading was last seen in the same month of 2011 and a higher score of 106 was recorded in June that year. Economists had forecast the indicator to fall marginally to 103.2 from 103.5 in June.

German unemployment increased unexpectedly in July, reports said citing data from the Federal Labor Agency on Thursday. The number of unemployed rose 9,000 in July from June, confounding expectations for a decline of 5,000.

The jobless rate remained unchanged at a seasonally adjusted 6.4 percent in July. The rate came in line with expectations.

Germany's unemployment rate held steady in June, figures from Destatis showed Thursday. The jobless rate came at an adjusted 4.7 percent in June, the same rate as in the previous month. In the corresponding month last year, the rate was 5.0 percent.

German inflation slowed to a 5-month low in July as energy prices declined further, preliminary data from Destatis showed Thursday. Consumer price inflation eased marginally to 0.2 percent in July from 0.3 percent in June. This was the lowest rate since February, when it was 0.1 percent. Inflation was expected to remain at 0.3 percent.

The buck slipped to a low of $1.5640 against the pound sterling Thursday morning, but has since climbed to $1.5590.

The greenback surged to a month and a half high of Y124.581 against the Japanese Yen Thursday, but has since eased back to around Y124.285.

Industrial production in Japan climbed a seasonally adjusted 0.8 percent on month in June, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said on Thursday. That beat expectations for an increase of 0.3 percent following the 2.1 percent contraction in May.

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Dollar Rising After Federal Reserve Announcement

The dollar is climbing against its major competitors Wednesday afternoon, following the release of the Federal Reserve's statement. The Fed decided against raising interest rates, waiting for a bit more confirmation that the economy is on solid ground.

Because there was no post-decision press conference scheduled this month, the Fed's decision to stand pat was in line with market expectations.

A move is far more likely in September or December when Fed Chair Janet Yellen has the opportunity to calm investor fears at scheduled press conferences.

However, the Fed did not tip its hand about a September rate hike, as today's press release differed only cosmetically from the statement that followed its June meeting.

The only hint about tightening in September was in the form of a modest upgrade in the assessment of the labor market.

"The labor market continued to improve, with solid job gains and declining unemployment," the Fed said. "On balance, a range of labor market indicators suggests that underutilization of labor resources has diminished since early this year."

Pending home sales in the U.S. unexpectedly decreased in the month of June, according to a report released by the National Association of Realtors on Wednesday, with pending sales pulling back off a nine-year high.

NAR said its pending home sales index fell by 1.8 percent to 110.3 in June, while economists had expected the index to increase by 1.0 percent.

The dollar began Wednesday's session around $1.1080 against the Euro, but has broken out to a 2-day high of $1.0980 this afternoon.

German consumer morale is set to stabilize in August as income expectations improved further from record level on strong domestic fundamentals, survey data from market research group GfK revealed Wednesday.

Nonetheless, consumers assumed that the solution reached in the Greece debt dispute will have negative consequences on the economy.


The forward-looking consumer sentiment index came in at 10.1 points, unchanged from July and in line with expectations.

French consumer confidence decreased unexpectedly in July after improving in the previous month, survey data from the statistical office INSEE showed Wednesday. The consumer confidence index dropped slightly to 93 in July from 94 in June. Economists had expected the index to remain stable at 94.0.

The buck fell to a 3-week low of $1.5689 against the pound sterling Wednesday, but has since bounced back to around $1.56.

U.K. mortgage approvals increased more than expected in June and secured lending climbed most since 2008, data from the Bank of England showed Wednesday. The number of loan approvals for house purchase totaled 66,582 in June, up from 64,826 in May. It was forecast to increase marginally to 66,000.

U.K. retail sales growth is expected to slow next month after demand for clothing pushed up sales in July, the Distributive Trades Survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed Wednesday. The retail sales balance came in at +21 percent in July, which was below the expected score of +29 percent. A balance of +13 percent expects sales to increase in August.

The greenback slipped to an early low of Y123.327 against the Japanese Yen Wednesday, but has since climbed to a 3-day high of Y123.900.

The total value of retail sales in Japan advanced 0.9 percent on year in June, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said on Wednesday, coming in at 11.457 trillion yen. That missed forecasts for an increase of 1.1 percent following the 3.0 percent spike in May.

Confidence among Japan's small and medium-sized enterprises increased in July to reach its highest level in four months, survey figures released by the Shoko Chukin Bank showed Wednesday.

The small business confidence index rose by 2.4 percentage points to 49.3 in July from 46.9 in the previous month. In May, the score was 48.1. The latest reading was the strongest since March this year, when it marked 49.8.

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Dollar Breaking Out On Comments From Dennis Lockhart

The dollar was basically flat to down against its major competitors during Tuesday's session, but has broken out to the upside in the afternoon. The driving force behind the currency's move is comments from Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart.

Lockhart stated in a Wall Street Journal interview that it would take "a significant deterioration in the economic picture" to persuade the Fed not to raise rates in September. He also said that only a "significant deterioration" in economic momentum could convince him to wait longer.

Investors will be watching intently for the release of the U.S. employment report for July at the end of the trading week. The data looks to be or critical importance ahead of the Fed's September meeting.

Government data released on Tuesday showed that orders in the U.S. factory sector rose a little more than expected in June, rebounding from two consecutive months of declines.

The U.S. Commerce Department revealed that factory orders rose 1.8 percent in June compared to the previous month. Economists were predicting an increase of 1.7 percent. In May, factory orders were lower by 1.1 percent.

The dollar slipped to a low of $1.0987 against the Euro Tuesday, but has since broken out to a 3-session high of $1.09.

Eurozone producer prices declined as expected in June, largely due to cheaper energy costs, figures from Eurostat showed Tuesday. Producer prices fell 2.2 percent year-over-year in June, in line with expectations, but faster than previous month's 2.0 percent decrease.

The buck fell to a low of $1.5633 against the pound sterling Tuesday, but has since risen back to around $1.5580.


U.K. construction sector growth slowed unexpectedly in July with business activity and incoming new work expanding at slower rates, survey results from Markit Economics showed Tuesday. The Markit/Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply construction Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 57.1 in July from June's four-month high of 58.1. It was forecast to rise to 58.5.

U.K. house price growth accelerated as expected in July, after easing in the previous two months, data from the Nationwide Building Society showed Tuesday. House prices rose 3.5 percent year-over-year in July, in line with expectations, faster than previous month's 3.3 percent climb.

The greenback was hovering around the Y124 level against the Japanese Yen for much of Tuesday's session, but has since broken out to around Y124.200.

Total labor cash earnings in Japan dropped for the first time in seven months in June, a preliminary report from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare showed Tuesday. Total earnings fell 2.4 percent year-over-year to JPY 425,727 in June. The labor cash earnings growth for May was revised to 0.7 percent from 0.6 percent increase.

The monetary base in Japan jumped 32.8 percent on year in July, the Bank of Japan said on Tuesday, coming in at 325.737 trillion yen. That follows the 34.2 percent spike in June.

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Dollar Mixed After Private Sector Employment Disappoints

The dollar is turning in a mixed performance against its major competitors Wednesday. The U.S. currency broke out late Tuesday, after Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart stated that it would take "a significant deterioration in the economic picture" to persuade the Fed not to raise rates in September. However, the dollar has lost some ground after private sector employment came in below expectations.

Lockhart also said that only a "significant deterioration" in economic momentum could convince him to wait longer. Investors are eagerly anticipating the release of the U.S. employment report for July on Friday.

After reporting a sharp jump in private sector employment in the previous month, payroll processor ADP released a report on Wednesday showing that the pace of private sector job growth slowed by more than expected in July.

ADP said private sector employment climbed by 185,000 jobs in July following a downwardly revised increase of 229,000 jobs in June. Economists had expected an increase of about 215,000 jobs compared to the addition of 237,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

Largely reflecting a jump in the value of imports, the Commerce Department released a report on Wednesday showing that the U.S. trade deficit widened more than expected in June.

The report said the trade deficit widened to $43.8 billion in June from a revised $40.9 billion in May. Economists had expected the deficit to increase to $43.0 billion from the $41.9 billion originally reported for the previous month.

Activity in the U.S. service sector expanded at a significantly faster rate in the month of July, according to a report released by the Institute for Supply Management on Wednesday.

The ISM said its non-manufacturing index jumped to 60.3 in July from 56.0 in June, with a reading above 50 indicating growth in the service sector. Economists had expected the index inch up to 56.2.

The dollar rose to a high of $1.0847 against the Euro Wednesday, but has since pulled back to around $1.09.

Eurozone retail sales declined more-than-expected in June, after rising in the previous two months, figures from Eurostat showed Wednesday.

Retail sales fell by seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent month-on-month in June, in contrast to a 0.1 percent slight increase in May, which was revised down from a 0.2 percent climb. The expected rate of drop was 0.2 percent. In April, sales had risen 0.7 percent.

The rate of expansion in Eurozone economic activity slowed slightly at the start of the third quarter, final data from Markit Economics showed Wednesday. Nonetheless, growth remained close to June's four-year high. The composite output index fell to 53.9 in July from 54.2 in June. It was above the flash estimate of 53.7.

German private sector growth remained unchanged in July, final data from Markit Economics showed Wednesday. The composite output index came in at 53.7 in July, unchanged from June. The flash score for July was 53.4.

The French private sector growth eased to a three-month low as initially estimated in July, final data from Markit Economics showed Wednesday. The composite output index fell to 51.5 in July from 53.3 in June. The reading came in line with flash estimate published on July 24. It signals the slowest growth rate in three months.

The buck reached an early high of $1.5524 against the pound sterling Wednesday, but has since retreated to around $1.56.

The U.K. services sector growth slowed more than expected in July, survey data from Markit Economics showed Wednesday. Still the survey signaled strong growth in the dominant services sector moving into the second half of 2015.

The Markit/Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 57.4 in July, from 58.5 in June. It was forecast to drop marginally to 58 in July.

Shop prices in the United Kingdom were down 1.4 percent on year in July, the British Retail Consortium said on Wednesday - after slipping 1.3 percent in June.

The greenback broke out to a 2-month high of Y125.011 against the Japanese Yen Wednesday, but has since eased back to around Y124.725.

The services sector in Japan remained in expansion in July, albeit at a slower pace, the latest survey from Nikkei revealed on Wednesday with a PMI score of 51.2. That's down from 51.8 in June, although it remains well above the boom-or-bust level of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

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Pound Slides As BoE Votes 8-1 To Hold Rates; Cuts 2015 Inflation View

The pound fell sharply against its major rivals on Thursday, as the Bank of England left its key rates unchanged at a record low by an overwhelming majority of 8-1 votes, while downgrading its inflation forecast for 2015 on the back of falling oil prices and an over-valued domestic currency.

The Monetary Policy Committee voted 8-1 to maintain its bank rate at 0.50 percent, while the quantitative easing was kept at GBP 375 billion. Ian McCafferty voted to hike the rate by a quarter point on Wednesday.

For most members, the outlook for inflation described in the Inflation Report meant that it was not necessary to change the policy stance at this meeting, the minutes showed. The minutes were released alongside the decision for the first time.

In the quarterly Inflation Report, the bank downgraded inflation forecast for 2015 to 0.3 percent from its previous projection of 0.6 percent, which pushed back expectations for rate hike further out into 2016.

In other economic news, data from the Office for National Statistics showed that U.K. industrial production declined unexpectedly in June, while manufacturing output recovered from the prior month.

Industrial output dropped 0.4 percent in June from May, when it was up 0.3 percent. This was the first fall in five months. Production was forecast to rise marginally by 0.1 percent.

Wednesday, the pound rose 0.64 percent against the euro, 0.37 percent against the franc, 0.60 percent against the yen and 0.21 percent against the greenback.

The pound was trading higher against its major rivals, except the euro, in the previous session as investors were pricing in for a tighter monetary policy to come soon.

In European deals, the pound, having advanced to 1.5368 against the franc at 5:30 am ET, retreated to 1.5211. If the pound-franc pair continues slide, it may challenge support around the 1.51 mark. At Wednesday's close, the pair was valued at 1.5271.

Survey results from the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs showed that Swiss consumer sentiment weakened sharply in July as strong franc weigh on future economic and financial expectations.

The consumer confidence index dropped to -19 in July from -6 in April. It was forecast to drop marginally to -7 in July.

The pound depreciated to near a 2-week low of 1.5486 against the greenback, a 0.96 percent decline from a high of 1.5636 hit at 2:45 am ET. Further weakness may take the pound to a support around the 1.536 region. The pair ended yesterday's trading at 1.5600.

Pulling away from an early 1-1/2-month high of 195.24 against the yen, the pound eased to 193.32 after these releases. The pound is poised to challenge support around the 192.00 region. The pound-yen pair was trading at 194.66 when it closed Wednesday's trading.

Preliminary figures from the Cabinet Office showed that Japan's leading index, which measures the future economic activity, rose more-than-expected to the highest level in sixteen months in June.

The leading index climbed to 107.2 in June from 106.0 in the previous month, revised down from 106.2. Economists had expected the index to rise to 106.9.

The pound reversed from an early high of 0.6968 against the European currency, declining to a 2-day low of 0.7038. The pound is seen finding support surrounding the 0.71 area. The euro-pound pair was quoted at 0.6988 at Wednesday's close.

Preliminary figures from Destatis showed that Germany's factory orders increased at a faster-than-expected pace in June, after falling in the previous month.

Factory orders climbed a seasonally and working-day-adjusted 2.0 percent month-on-month in June, reversing a 0.3 percent drop in May, which was revised from a 0.2 percent fall.

Looking ahead, U.S. weekly jobless claims for the week ended August 1 and U.K. NIESR gross domestic product estimate for July are due in the New York session.

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Dollar Little Changed Ahead Of Employment Report

The dollar is turning in a mixed performance against its major competitors Thursday, but is little changed overall. Investors have shown reluctance to take positions ahead of tomorrow's highly anticipated employment report for July.

A strong jobs report would likely add to speculation that the Federal Reserve will raise rates in September, while a weak report could provide ammunition for more dovish central bankers to argue that the rate hike should be delayed.

Following the rebound seen in the previous week, first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits saw some further upside in the week ended August 1st, the Labor Department said in a report on Thursday.

The report said initial jobless claims edged up to 270,000, an increase of 3,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 267,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to rise to 273,000. With the modest increase, jobless claims climbed further off the more than forty-year low of 255,000 set in the week ended July 18th.

The dollar rose to a high of $1.0872 against the Euro Thursday, but has since pulled back to around $1.0920.

German manufacturing new orders surged in June, driven by robust demand from abroad, thanks to a weaker euro, dispelling concerns of a slowdown in the largest euro area economy.

Factory orders rose a seasonally-and-calendar adjusted 2 percent from May, when they declined 0.3 percent, figures from the Federal Statistical Office showed Thursday. May's drop was downwardly revised from the 0.2 percent fall estimated initially. Economists had expected a mere 0.3 percent increase for the month. In April, orders grew 2.2 percent.

Germany's construction sector expanded at the weakest pace in six months in July, as output growth eased and new orders fell, survey figures from Markit Economics showed Thursday. The seasonally adjusted Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, dropped marginally to 50.6 in July from 50.7 in the previous month.

The Bank of England kept its key rate unchanged at a record low in a split vote in August as the majority of policymakers waited for signs of price pressures before starting monetary policy tightening.

The Monetary Policy Committee voted 8-1 to maintain its bank rate at 0.50 percent in the policy session that concluded Wednesday, which was the first split vote this year. Policymakers unanimously decided to keep quantitative easing at GBP 375 billion.

The central bank for the first time released the minutes of the session along with the decision announcement on Thursday. As part of Governor Mark Carney's plan to make policymaking more transparent, the bank simultaneously published the Inflation Report on "Super Thursday".

Ian McCafferty voted to hike the rate by a quarter point. Economists had forecast two dissenters with Martin Weale expected to call for an increase. However, he stood with the majority in August.

One of the dovish members of the MPC, David Miles also voted to keep the rates on hold in his final meeting. His recent comment that the time for a rate hike is coming closer had surprised the markets.

The actual path the Bank Rate will follow over the next few years will depend on the economic circumstances, the bank said in its monetary policy summary. The buck jumped to nearly a 2-week high of $1.5465 against the pound sterling Thursday, but has since eased back to around $1.55.

U.K. industrial production declined unexpectedly on a slump in oil and gas extraction in June, while manufacturing output recovered from the prior month.

Confounding expectations for a 0.1 percent increase, industrial production dropped 0.4 percent in June from May, when it rose a revised 0.3 percent, data from the Office for National Statistics revealed Thursday. This was the first fall in five months.

U.K. house prices dropped unexpectedly in July from June, data from Lloyds Banking Group's Halifax division revealed Thursday. House prices decreased 0.6 percent from June, which was the first fall in five months and confounding expectations for a 0.4 percent rise. Prices had increased 1.6 percent in June.

The greenback dipped to a low of Y124.536 against the Japanese Yen, but has since climbed back to around Y124.750, nearly unchanged for the day.

The leading index for Japan, which measures the future economic activity, rose more-than-expected to the highest level in sixteen months in June, preliminary figures from the Cabinet Office showed Wednesday. The leading index climbed to 107.2 in June from 106.0 in the previous month, revised down from 106.2. Economists had expected the index to rise to 106.9.

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Dollar Little Changed Ahead Of Employment Report

The dollar is turning in a mixed performance against its major competitors Thursday, but is little changed overall. Investors have shown reluctance to take positions ahead of tomorrow's highly anticipated employment report for July.

A strong jobs report would likely add to speculation that the Federal Reserve will raise rates in September, while a weak report could provide ammunition for more dovish central bankers to argue that the rate hike should be delayed.

Following the rebound seen in the previous week, first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits saw some further upside in the week ended August 1st, the Labor Department said in a report on Thursday.

The report said initial jobless claims edged up to 270,000, an increase of 3,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 267,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to rise to 273,000. With the modest increase, jobless claims climbed further off the more than forty-year low of 255,000 set in the week ended July 18th.

The dollar rose to a high of $1.0872 against the Euro Thursday, but has since pulled back to around $1.0920.

German manufacturing new orders surged in June, driven by robust demand from abroad, thanks to a weaker euro, dispelling concerns of a slowdown in the largest euro area economy.

Factory orders rose a seasonally-and-calendar adjusted 2 percent from May, when they declined 0.3 percent, figures from the Federal Statistical Office showed Thursday. May's drop was downwardly revised from the 0.2 percent fall estimated initially. Economists had expected a mere 0.3 percent increase for the month. In April, orders grew 2.2 percent.

Germany's construction sector expanded at the weakest pace in six months in July, as output growth eased and new orders fell, survey figures from Markit Economics showed Thursday. The seasonally adjusted Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, dropped marginally to 50.6 in July from 50.7 in the previous month.

The Bank of England kept its key rate unchanged at a record low in a split vote in August as the majority of policymakers waited for signs of price pressures before starting monetary policy tightening.

The Monetary Policy Committee voted 8-1 to maintain its bank rate at 0.50 percent in the policy session that concluded Wednesday, which was the first split vote this year. Policymakers unanimously decided to keep quantitative easing at GBP 375 billion.

The central bank for the first time released the minutes of the session along with the decision announcement on Thursday. As part of Governor Mark Carney's plan to make policymaking more transparent, the bank simultaneously published the Inflation Report on "Super Thursday".

Ian McCafferty voted to hike the rate by a quarter point. Economists had forecast two dissenters with Martin Weale expected to call for an increase. However, he stood with the majority in August.

One of the dovish members of the MPC, David Miles also voted to keep the rates on hold in his final meeting. His recent comment that the time for a rate hike is coming closer had surprised the markets.

The actual path the Bank Rate will follow over the next few years will depend on the economic circumstances, the bank said in its monetary policy summary. The buck jumped to nearly a 2-week high of $1.5465 against the pound sterling Thursday, but has since eased back to around $1.55.

U.K. industrial production declined unexpectedly on a slump in oil and gas extraction in June, while manufacturing output recovered from the prior month.

Confounding expectations for a 0.1 percent increase, industrial production dropped 0.4 percent in June from May, when it rose a revised 0.3 percent, data from the Office for National Statistics revealed Thursday. This was the first fall in five months.

U.K. house prices dropped unexpectedly in July from June, data from Lloyds Banking Group's Halifax division revealed Thursday. House prices decreased 0.6 percent from June, which was the first fall in five months and confounding expectations for a 0.4 percent rise. Prices had increased 1.6 percent in June.

The greenback dipped to a low of Y124.536 against the Japanese Yen, but has since climbed back to around Y124.750, nearly unchanged for the day.

The leading index for Japan, which measures the future economic activity, rose more-than-expected to the highest level in sixteen months in June, preliminary figures from the Cabinet Office showed Wednesday. The leading index climbed to 107.2 in June from 106.0 in the previous month, revised down from 106.2. Economists had expected the index to rise to 106.9.

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Dollar Pulling Back After July Employment Report

The dollar was up against its major competitors early Friday, but reversed direction after the release of the U.S. employment report for July. The report showed somewhat weaker than expected job growth in July, but the data was widely seen as strong enough to support an increase in interest rates in September.

Job growth in the U.S. slowed for the second consecutive month in July, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Friday, although the report still showed a notable increase in employment. The report said non-farm payroll employment rose by 215,000 jobs in July following an upwardly revised increase of 231,000 jobs in June and a jump of 260,000 jobs in May.

Economists had expected employment to climb by about 223,000 jobs, which would have matched the increase originally reported for the previous month.

The report also said the unemployment rate held at 5.3 percent in July, unchanged from the seven-year low set in June. The unchanged reading matched economist estimates.

The next monthly jobs report may be even more closely watched, as it will be released less than two weeks before the Fed's September meeting.

The dollar rose to an early high of $1.0854 against the Euro Friday, but has since dropped to a 3-session low of $1.0970.

German exports decreased for the first time in five months in June and imports fell unexpectedly, preliminary figures from Destatis showed Friday. Exports dropped 1.0 percent month-on-month in June, reversing a 1.6 percent climb in the previous month. Economists had expected a 0.3 percent fall for the month.

Imports also slid 0.5 percent monthly in June, confounding economists' expectations for a 0.5 percent gain. In May, imports had risen 0.7 percent. The seasonally and calendar-adjusted trade surplus came in at EUR 22.0 billion in June.

Germany's industrial production logged an unexpected decline in June, provisional data from Destatis revealed Friday. Industrial production dropped 1.4 percent month-on-month in June, which was the biggest fall since August, when it declined 2.8 percent. It was expected to rise 0.3 percent. In May, production grew by revised 0.2 percent.

French industrial output declined unexpectedly in June after rising in the previous month, the statistical office Insee reported Friday. Industrial production declined 0.1 percent month-on-month in June, in contrast to a 0.4 percent rise in May. Economists had expected a 0.2 percent increase for the month. In April, output had fallen 1.0 percent.

France's trade deficit sharply narrowed in June to reach its lowest level in more than eight years as exports grew robustly on the back of several large contracts, data from French Customs showed Friday. The trade deficit declined to EUR 2.658 billion from EUR 3.999 billion in May. The latest trade gap was the smallest since March 2007, when the shortfall was EUR 2.533 billion. A year ago, the trade deficit was EUR 5.529 billion.

The buck broke out to a 2-month high of $1.5423 against the pound sterling Friday morning, but has since retreated to around $1.5480.

The U.K. visible trade deficit widened in June, data from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday. The visible trade deficit increased to GBP 9.2 billion in June from GBP 8.4 billion in May. But it was smaller than the expected shortfall of GBP 9.3 billion.

The Bank of Japan decided to keep its massive monetary stimulus unchanged on Friday as it intends to achieve its 2 percent inflation target without additional measures.

The Policy Board of the BoJ governed by Haruhiko Kuroda decided by an 8-1 majority vote to maintain its target of raising the monetary base at an annual pace of about JPY 80 trillion. Takahide Kiuchi was the sole dissenter.

Japan's economy has continued to recover moderately, the bank said. exports and industrial production have been picking up, albeit with some fluctuations. The assessment was unchanged from previous statement.

The greenback broke out to a 2-month high of Y125.067 against the Japanese Yen Friday, but has since retreated to around Y124.150.

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Dollar Relents On Fed's Murky Outlook For Rate Hike

The dollar gave back early gains versus the euro on Monday as a pair of top Federal Reserve offered differing views on when the central bank should raise interest rates.

Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said the central bank won't raise interest rates until inflation has returned to normal. Consumer prices have failed to heat up even though the economy is doing well and rates are at historic lows.

Meanwhile, Atlanta Fed Governor Dennis Lockhart said that policy makers are "close to hiking rates." He failed to mention the word "September," however, leaving some to wonder whether December is the more likely time for lift-off.

The dollar slipped back to $1.10 versus the euro on the news, down from an early high near $1.09.

Early gains also evaporated versus the sterling, leaving the dollar at $1.56.

The dollar traded at 124.50 yen, up very slightly from Friday.

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Dollar Staggers On China's Unpleasant Surprise

The dollar tumbled on Wednesday as China's currency manipulation put pressure on the Federal Reserve to hold interest rates near zero.

China intervened in the currency markets for a second day, cutting the value of the yuan by the most in decades.

Analysts say that any further strengthening of the dollar relative to major rivals will crush U.S. exporters and derail the economic recovery.

That means the Fed is likely to hold off on interest rates until at least December and possibly into the new year.

The dollar dropped to $1.12 versus the euro, staying away from recent multi-year highs. Gradual losses took the dollar to $1.566 versus the sterling, and the buck traded down at Y124.15 against the yen.

China's manipulation has rattled equities markets as well. European stocks suffered their worst day of the year.

China's industrial production and retail sales growth eased in July, providing broad signals that policies taken so far prove insufficient to achieve its GDP growth target of about 7 percent.

According to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics, industrial production expanded 6 percent year-on-year in July, slower than June's 6.8 percent increase and the 6.6 percent rise forecast by economists.

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Dollar Steadies Amid Slew Of U.S. Data

The dollar was slightly stronger versus major rivals Thursday, taking back some of this week's losses versus the euro and yen.

Traders are going back and forth on whether the Federal Reserve will delay an interest rate hike in reaction to China's currency manipulation.

A slew of upbeat U.S. economic data might convince the Fed to go ahead with a rate hike anyways.

A report from the Commerce Department showed that retail sales rose in line with estimates in July.

A separate report showed a much bigger than expected increase in business inventories in June, while the Labor Department reported a modest increase in weekly jobless claims.

Elsewhere, euro zone policymakers expect the 17-nation economic recovery to broaden further, but to remain moderate and gradual.

The dollar rose to $1.11 versus the euro, picking up about a penny. There was little movement near $1.56 versus the sterling, but the buck edged higher to Y124.50 versus the yen.

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Dollar Wobbles Amid Tame Inflation

The dollar was mixed Friday as traders continued to digest China's currency manipulation.

China earlier in the week devalued the yuan in order to prop up its stumbling economy, spooking markets worldwide.

The Federal Reserve might be compelled to delay raising interest rates given headwinds from China and weak inflation.

The Labor Department released a report on Friday showing that producer prices in the U.S. rose by slightly more than expected in the month of July.

Still, U.S. producer prices rose only 0.2 percent, down from a 0.4 percent gain in the prior month.

Meanwhile, U.S. industrial production increased by more than expected in the month of July. The report said industrial production climbed by 0.6 percent.

The dollar improved to $1.11 versus the euro, but was stuck at $1.56 versus the sterling and Y124.50 against the yen.

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Canadian Dollar Slides Against Majors

The Canadian dollar weakened against the other major currencies in the Asian session on Monday.

The Canadian dollar fell to a 5-day low of 1.3115 against the U.S. dollar, from Friday's closing value of 1.3094.

Against the yen and the euro, the loonie retreated to 94.82 and 1.4547 from early highs of 94.97 and 1.4523, respectively. This may be compared to an early 1-week low of 94.81 against the yen and 1.4557 against the euro.

The loonie edged down to 0.9671 against the Australian dollar, from last week's closing value of 0.9657.

If the loonie extends its downtrend, it is likely to find support around 1.32 against the greenback, 93.00 against the yen, 1.46 against the euro and 0.97 against the aussie.