The Euro and dollar both face important vulnerabilities and both currency will also find it difficult to make a decisive move in the short term with Euro support on dips.

After resisting a further test of support close to 1.25 against the dollar on Thursday the Euro strengthened significantly over the day. The Euro was underpinned by speculation that the German government would pledge support for Eastern European economies. It may prove more difficult to secure durable support, especially with the German economy still contracting.

The US industrial survey data remained depressed with the Philadelphia Fed index weakening sharply to -41.3 from -24.3 in January and this was the weakest headline reading since 1990. All the current components were depressed, although the improvement in the six-month outlook index will provide some slight optimism over second-half prospects. Leading indicators also strengthened for the second successive month.

The labour-market data remained extremely weak with initial claims at 627,000, unchanged from the revised level the previous week, and remaining at the highest level since 1980. Continuing claims also pushed to the highest level since at least 1970, reinforcing the very severe stresses in the economy.

The Euro pushed to a high around 1.2760, but was unable to sustain a move above the previous support level around 1.2730 and edged lower later in US trading as The Dow Jones index tested November lows. As confidence remained fragile, the Euro weakened back to below 1.26 in Europe on Friday.