The U.S. dollar gained some ground against its major rivals on Friday, riding on stronger-than-expected retail sales data.
Data from the Commerce Department showed retail sales climbed by 0.6% in June after plunging by a revised 1.7% in May.
The rebound surprised economists, who had expected retail sales to fall by 0.4% compared to the 1.3% slump originally reported for the previous month.
Meanwhile, according to a preliminary report from the University of Michigan said consumer sentiment in the U.S. has unexpectedly seen a significant deterioration in the month of July.
The report showed the consumer sentiment index slumped to 80.8 in July from 85.5 in June. The decrease surprised economists, who had expected the index to inch up to 86.5.
The dollar index, which rose to 92.76, rallying from a low of 92.53 it touched in the Asian session, was last seen hovering around 92.70, up 0.08% from the previous close.
Against the Euro, the dollar firmed to $1.1792 before paring gains and easing to $1.1807, up just marginally from Thursday’s close. Eurozone inflation fell below 2% in June, as initially estimated, final data from Eurostat showed. Inflation eased to 1.9% in June from 2% in the prior month. The annual rate came in line with the flash estimate released on June 30.
The inflation rate had exceeded the European Central Bank’s target of “below, but close to 2%” in May for the first time since 2018.
Against Pound Sterling, the dollar strengthened to 1.3764, gaining nearly 0.5%.
The Yen weakened to 110.06 a dollar, dropping from 109.84. The Bank of Japan decided to maintain its monetary stimulus unchanged and unveiled a preliminary outline for the new programme to support efforts on climate change.
The bank also lowered its near-term growth outlook citing the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and raised its fiscal 2021 inflation forecast.
Against the Aussie, the dollar strengthened to 0.7397 from 0.7423, gaining about 0.35%.
The Swiss franc weakened to 0.9197 from 0.9178 a dollar, while the Loonie dropped to 1.2617 a dollar from 1.2595.