The U.S. dollar was a bit sluggish on Friday, as major currencies reacted to a slew of economic data from across the globe.
Additionally, markets awaited announcements regarding stimulus, updates on vaccine supplies and continued to track news about coronavirus cases.
In U.S. economic news, a report from the Commerce Department showed personal income climbed by 0.6% in December after tumbling by a downwardly revised 1.3% in November. Economists had expected personal income to inch up by 0.1% compared to the 1.1% slump originally reported for the previous month.
The report also said personal spending dipped by 0.2% in December after falling by a downwardly revised 0.7% a month earlier. Economists had expected spending to decrease by 0.4%, matching the drop originally reported for the previous month.
The University of Michigan’s report showed consumer sentiment deteriorated by slightly more than initially estimated in the month of January. The report said the consumer sentiment index for January was downwardly revised to 79.0 from the preliminary reading of 79.2.
Economists had expected the consumer sentiment index to be unrevised from the preliminary reading, which was still down from 80.7 in December.
The dollar index, which fell to 90.36 from a high of 90.78, recovered some ground subsequently and was last seen hovering around 90.55, up 0.11% from previous close.
Against the Euro, the dollar, the euro was up marginally, fetching $1.2133 a unit, compared to $1.2123 Thursday evening. In economic news, the German economy managed to expand in the fourth quarter avoiding a double-dip recession, despite the second wave of coronavirus triggered another lockdown at the end of 2020.
According to preliminary data from the statistical office Insee, the French economy contracted less-than-expected in the fourth quarter.
The dollar firmed up to 1.3701 against Sterling, recovering after trading at $1.3751 a unit of the British currency in the European session.
The Yen was weaker at 104.74 a dollar, sliding from 104.26 a dollar on Thursday. Japan’s consumer confidence decreased to the lowest level in five months in January, data from the Cabinet Office showed. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the consumer confidence index decreased to 29.6 in January from 31.8 in December.
Against the Aussie, the dollar gained in strength. The AUD-USD pair was quoting at 0.7639, after trading at 0.7689 in the previous session.
The Swiss franc was weaker at 0.8910, sliding from 0.8888. The KOF Economic Barometer in Switzerland slid to its lowest level since July, falling to 96.5 in January of 2021 from a downwardly revised 104.1 in the previous month and much worse than market expectations of 102.
The Loonie firmed up to 1.2795, gaining from 1.2830 a dollar. The Canadian economy grew 0.7% over a month earlier in November of 2020, following a 0.4% expansion in the previous month and compared to market expectations of a 0.4% gain. GDP fose for the seventh consecutive month following the biggest contraction on record in March and April.