US dollar mixed amid upbeat data

New York, Aug 19 (IANS) The US dollar traded mixed against other major currencies amid the country’s strong economic data.

The US commerce department on Tuesday said that privately-owned housing starts in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,206,000, the highest level since October 2007, Xinhua reported.

Housing starts is an economic indicator that reflects the number of privately-owned new houses on which construction has been started in a given period.

The latest reading was 0.2 percent above the revised June estimate of 1,204,000 and was 10.1 percent above the July 2014 rate of 1,095,000.

The positive housing starts report added to the recent robust jobs and retail sales data, bolstered market speculation for an interest rate hike as soon as September.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, was up 0.20 percent at 96.997 in late trading.

In late New York trading, the euro fell to $1.1024 from $1.1080 in the previous session, and the British pound climbed to $1.5663 from $1.5592 in the previous session. The Australian dollar dropped to $0.7340 from $0.9379.

The US dollar bought 124.39 Japanese yen, lower than 124.43 yen of the previous session, hiked to 0.9782 Swiss franc from 0.9769 Swiss franc, and inched down to 1.3059 Canadian dollars from 1.3084 Canadian dollars.

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