The British currency ticked down further against major counterparts during New York mid-day trading on Thursday. Traders considered reports from the Office for National Statistics on the UK's retail sales and total business investment data.
The Office for National Statistics said today that UK retail sales dropped 1.9% in February from the previous month, while economists were expecting a monthly 0.4% decrease. From the previous year, retail sales volume rose 0.4% in February, which was the lowest growth since September 1995. Annual growth stood below 2.5% increase expected by economists.
In addition, the Office for National Statistics said that UK's total business investment declined 1.5% sequentially to GBP 34.95 billion in the final three months of 2008, revised up from a 3.9% fall reported initially.
After a slight gain in early trading, the pound declined against the US dollar in New York mid-morning deals today. At 10:30 am ET, the pound fell to 1.4476 versus the greenback from earlier high of 1.4637. The pair is now worth 1.4502.
The U.S. Labor Department announced that initial jobless claims rose to 652,000 for the week ended March 21st, compared to the previous week's level of 644,000. Analysts had expected the figure to come in at a level of 650,000.
According to the US Commerce Department, the GDP fell by a revised 6.3 percent in the fourth quarter compared to the preliminary estimate of a 6.2 percent decrease.
Extending previous session's downtrend, the sterling slipped further against the euro and touched a low of 0.9368 by about 10:40 am ET. As of now, the pound is trading near 0.9347 against the euro.
Against the Swiss franc, the British currency also edged down in New York mid-day deals reversing some of a recent uptrend. The pound declined to 1.6313 against the franc at about 10:40 am ET from a recent high of 1.6425. Currently, the pound-franc pair is at 1.6345.
The pound dropped to a new multi-day low of 1.7873 against the Canadian loonie.
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