The euro moved sharply higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested offers around the US$ 1.4445 level and was supported around the $1.4205 level. The common currency reached its highest level since 21 October 2008 as traders chased riskier and higher-yielding assets. Data released in the U.S. today contributed to investors€™ moves to assume more risk. First, the July ISM manufacturing index printed at 48.9, up from the June reading of 44.8. The ISM prices paid component rallied to 55.0 from 50.0 in June and other sub-indices also improved including the production and new orders components. Second, June construction spending rallied to +0.3% m/m from a revised May reading of -0.8% m/m, an unexpected improvement, while activity was off 10.2% y/y. Data released in the U.S. tomorrow include June personal spending and producer price inflation data. In eurozone news, EMU-16 July manufacturing PMI improved to 46.3 from 42.6 in June, more-than-expected albeit still below the €œboom or bust€ 50.0 level. Germany€™s PMI manufacturing result printed at 45.7, up from 40.9 in June. Surprisingly, however, German retail sales were off a real 1.8% m/m and off 1.6% y/y. June producer price inflation data will be released tomorrow. The European Central Bank is expected to keep interest rates unchanged when it convenes on Thursday but there is some chatter the BoE could announce measures regarding an end to its quantitative easing program. Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.3900 figure.