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FOREX-Dollar gains over euro as data shows strong U.S. economy
Published at 18/04/2019 at 19:00

* U.S. retail sales, jobless claims show strong economy

* Euro hurt by weak manufacturing data

(Updates prices)

By Karen Brettell

NEW YORK, April 18 (Reuters) - The U.S. dollar gained to its strongest level against the euro in over a week on Thursday as data pointed to a sturdy U.S. economy, while the euro was dented by weak manufacturing activity in Europe.

U.S. retail sales increased by the most in 1-1/2 years in March as households boosted purchases of motor vehicles and a range of other goods, the latest indication that economic growth picked up in the first quarter after a false start.

The economy's enduring strength was underscored by other data on Thursday showing the number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits dropped to the lowest in nearly 50 years last week.

The picture was less bullish in the euro zone as data showed that activity in Germany's manufacturing sector shrank for a fourth straight month in April, while a similar survey from France also painted a bleak picture.

“In the space of several hours we got a timely reminder that the growth leadership is very decisively in favor of the U.S. dollar,” said Richard Franulovich, head of FX strategy at Westpac Banking Corp in New York.

Investors have been looking for signs that global growth is stabilizing after a slowdown.

"Investors are worried about the health of the global economy and the eurozone and the fortunes of the euro are closely tied with that," said Ricardo Evangelista, a senior analyst at ActivTrades in London.

A week ago, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi raised the prospect of more support for the struggling euro zone economy if its slowdown persist.

========================================================

Currency bid prices at 1:52PM (1752 GMT)

Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid

Previous Change Change

Session

Euro/Dollar EUR= $1.1228 $1.1294 -0.58 -2.10 +1.1305 +1.1227

Dollar/Yen JPY= 111.9400 112.0500 -0.10 +1.52 +112.0700 +111.7800

Euro/Yen EURJPY= 125.67 126.54 -0.69 -0.44 +126.6000 +125.6500

Dollar/Swiss CHF= 1.0153 1.0103 +0.49 +3.45 +1.0159 +1.0093

Sterling/Dollar GBP= 1.2987 1.3043 -0.43 +1.80 +1.3053 +1.2980

Dollar/Canadian CAD= 1.3378 1.3338 +0.30 -1.90 +1.3399 +1.3336

Australian/Doll AUD= 0.7143 0.7178 -0.49 +1.33 +0.7199 +0.7137

ar

Euro/Swiss EURCHF= 1.1400 1.1414 -0.12 +1.30 +1.1422 +1.1367

Euro/Sterling EURGBP= 0.8645 0.8657 -0.14 -3.77 +0.8669 +0.8637

NZ NZD= 0.6674 0.6726 -0.77 -0.64 +0.6730 +0.6673

Dollar/Dollar

Dollar/Norway NOK= 8.5229 8.4911 +0.37 -1.34 +8.5597 +8.4867

Euro/Norway EURNOK= 9.5710 9.5976 -0.28 -3.38 +9.6314 +9.5700

Dollar/Sweden SEK= 9.3132 9.2466 +0.11 +3.90 +9.3350 +9.2391

Euro/Sweden EURSEK= 10.4593 10.4475 +0.11 +1.90 +10.5034 +10.4400

(Additional reporting by Saikat Chatterjee in London Editing by Susan Thomas and Bernadette Baum)

((Karen.Brettell@thomsonreuters.com; +1 646 223 6274; Reuters Messaging: karen.brettell.reuters.com@reuters.net))