Dollar index continues to climb on Fed rate hike

Investing.com – The dollar continued to climb against the other majors currencies on Thursday, hitting fresh 14-year highs as the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise interest rates lent broad support to the greenback.

The greenback found broad support after the Fed concluded its policy meeting on Wednesday by raising interest rates by 25 basis points and projected three more rate hikes for 2017.

It was the Fed’s first rate hike since December 2015.

The dollar was also boosted after the U.S. Labor Department reported on Thursday that initial jobless claims in the week ending December 10 fell to 254,000 from the previous week’s total of 258,000.

Analysts had expected jobless claims to total 255,000 last week.

A separate report showed that the U.S. consumer price index rose 0.2% last month, in line with expectations. Year-on-year, consumer prices increased by 1.7%.

In addition, the Philly Fed manufacturing index climbed to a two-year high of 21.5 this month from 7.6 in November, blowing past expectations for a reading of 9.0.

EUR/USD tumbled 1.01% to fresh 14-year lows of 1.0428.

Earlier Thursday, data showing that euro zone private sector output maintained a robust pace of expansion at the end of the year as a manufacturing upturn offset a slowdown in the service sector.

Elsewhere, GBP/USD lost 1.15% to 1.2422, the lowest since November 30, after the Bank of England said its nine member monetary policy committee was unanimous in the decision to keep interest rates at a record low of 0.25%.

Policymakers also voted 9-0 to keep the bank’s bond-buying program target at £435 billion and to continue with its new plan to buy up to £10 billion of corporate bonds.

USD/JPY rallied 1.15% to 118.37, while USD/CHF advanced 0.94% to 1.0299.

The Australian and New Zealand dollars pushed lower, with AUD/USD down 0.59% at 0.7363 and with NZD/USD retreating 1.12% to 0.7037.

Meanwhile, USD/CAD climbed 0.67% to trade at 1.3372, the highest since December 1.

Statistics Canada reported on Thursday that manufacturing sales fell 0.8% in October, compared to expectations for a 0.4% rise and after an uptick of 0.3% the previous month.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 1.05% at a fresh 14-year high of 103.10.

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