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    Dollar holds onto gains after upbeat Chicago PMI

    The dollar held onto gains against the other major currencies on Thursday, after data showed that manufacturing activity in the Chicago area returned to expansion in June, while markets continued to recover from the Brexit vote.

    Data showed that the Chicago purchasing managers’ index increased to 56.8 this month from a reading of 49.3 in May. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 50.7 in June.

    The report came after the U.S. Department of Labor said the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending June 25 rose by 10,000 to 268,000 from the previous week’s total of 258,000. Analysts expected jobless claims to increase by 9,000 to 267,000 last week.

    GBP/USD edged down 0.14% to 1.3412, off the 31-year low of 1.3122 set on Monday, a level not seen since 1985. The two-day selloff in sterling seen on Friday and Monday was the largest in recent history.

    The pound was still recovering from record losses posted amid fears that a Brexit could hit investment in the U.K. economy, threaten London's role as a global financial capital and usher in a period of slower global economic growth.

    European Council President Donald Tusk said on Wednesday that there was a "calm and serious discussion" about the consequences of the vote.

    He also reiterated that there would be no negotiations with the U.K on any future relationship until the country formally notified the EU of its intention to withdraw.

    Earlier Thursday, the U.K. Office for National Statistics said gross domestic product expanded by 0.4% in the first quarter, unchanged in this final estimate and in line with expectations. The U.K.’s economy grew by 0.6% in the preceding quarter.

    Year-over-year, the U.K. economy grew by 2.0% in the three months ended March 31, also in line with forecasts and unchanged from the prior estimate. The U.K. economy expanded at an annualized rate of 2.1% in the fourth quarter of 2015.

    EUR/USD slid 0.25% to 1.1097, while EUR/GBP fell 0.14% to 0.8274.

    In the euro zone, data earlier showed that German retail sales rose 0.9% in May, beating expectations for an increase of 0.7%. Retail sales fell 0.3% in April, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated decline of 0.9%.

    A separate report showed that the number of unemployed people in Germany declined by 6,000 in June, compared to expectations for a 5,000 drop. The number of unemployed people fell by 10,000 in May, revised from a previously estimated 11,000 decline.

    Germany’s unemployment rate held steady this month at 6.1% in line with expectations.

    USD/JPY was little changed at 102.89 after falling to lows of 99.15 on Friday, the weakest level since November 2013, while USD/CHF dropped 0.51% to 0.9746.

    The Australian and New Zealand dollars were weaker, with AUD/USD down 0.27% at 0.7431 and with NZD/USD slipping 0.10% to 0.7107.

    Elsewhere, USD/CAD gained 0.42% to trade at 1.2988. Official data earlier showed that Canada’s GDP rose 0.1% in April, in line with expectations, and after a 0.2% contraction 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 0.23% at 95.92.


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