US Dollar Mixed As 22 Million Americans Lose Jobs in Four Weeks

The US dollar is mixed against its G7 currency rivals on Thursday after the US government reported a slightly worse-than-expected jobs report that brought the total number of Americans who lost their jobs to about 22 million. A flurry of other economic data weighed on the greenback and US equities, leaving everyone wondering just how long the coronavirus pandemic will affect the world’s largest economy.

According to the Department of Labor, initial jobless claims came in at 5.245 million in the week ending April 11. This is down from the previous week’s 6.6 million reading, but it is higher than the median estimate of 5.105 million.
Continuing jobless claims surged 11.976 million in the week ending April 4, up from last week’s 7.446 million ascent. The market had forecast a reading of 13.5 million. The four-week average, which eliminates the week-to-week volatility, clocked in at 5.508 million, up from 4.267 million a week ago.
Has the job-loss trend peaked? Analysts are forecasting that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits will fall in the coming weeks as the federal government’s aid program kicks in. Plus, several states are considering incrementally reopening their economies by potentially exempting certain industries from the shutdown.
On the housing front, housing starts crashed 22.3% in March, down from -3.4% in February. Building permits also slumped 6.8% last month, down from -6.3% in the prior month.
On Wednesday, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported that mortgage applications surged 7.3% in the week ending April 10. Also, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Housing Market Index — a homebuilder confidence index — tumbled from 72 in March to 30 this month.
The leading US stock indexes were mixed at the opening bell as investors weighed the bearish data. The benchmark 10-year Treasury note dipped 0.038% to 0.6035%
The US Dollar Index advanced 0.3% to 99.76, from an opening of 99.63, at 12:41 GMT on Thursday. The index, which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, is on track for a modest weekly gain of around 0.25%, lifting its year-to-date boost to around 3.5%.
The USD/CAD currency pair tumbled 0.14% to 1.4093, from an opening of 1.4116. The EUR/USD slipped 0.31% to 1.0879, from an opening of 1.0911.

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