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The Dollar has a strong day in the markets

Published: 31 Jul at 11 AM Tags: Euro Exchange Rate, Dollar Exchange Rate, Currency Exchange, Euro Crisis, UK, Economy,

The US dollar enjoyed another strong day in the foreign exchange market yesterday after data showed that the US economy grew at an annualised rate of 4% in the second quarter of this year as it bounced back strongly from the strong contraction suffered due to the inclement weather in the region in the first quarter of the year.

The data was far ahead of analysts’ predictions and help the Dollar make some strong gains across the board. The political situations in the Gaza strip and Ukraine also helped increase demand for the ‘safe haven’ qualities of the Dollar.

Chris Williamson, Chief Economist at Markit commented that the rebound in second-quarter growth wasn't simply due to better weather in the three months to June, and that he forecasts "further impressive growth" is more than likely in the third quarter of the year.

In a separate report, data showed that US mortgage applications fell by 2.2% in the week to 25 July following a 2.4% increase in the previous week and US personal consumption rose by 2.5% in the second quarter of this year compared to a 1.2% gain in the first quarter.

Overnight, the US Federal Reserve said in a statement that US labour market conditions had improved and voted to continue to slowly cut its monthly Quantitative Easing (QE) bond buying program by another $10 billion a month to $25 billion a month. Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen advised that the whole program should be wound up by October.

Alongside the worsening situation in the Gaza strip, Argentina last night defaulted on its international debts in a further worrying sign for international investors and the currency and other financial markets. Argentina has now defaulted twice since the turn of the century as last minute talks failed to resolve a long standing stand-off between the Argentine government and some of its bondholders. Credit ratings agency Standard & Poor’s immediately downgraded Argentine sovereign debt to ‘selective default’.

Meanwhile, Russia has been on the wrong end of sweeping new sanctions which target Russian state-owned banks, impose an arms embargo and restrict sales of sensitive technology and the export of equipment for the country's oil industry in a series of moves designed to respond in the strongest possible terms to Moscow's continued backing for separatists in eastern Ukraine. These represent the most extensive sanctions imposed by the European Union on Russia since the end of the cold war.