The U.S. dollar traded mixed against major currencies in late New York trading on Friday as U.S. unemployment rate fell unexpectedly to two-year low, but not enough to support the dollar against the euro given a high possibility of euro zone interest rate hike next week.
The U.S. Labor Department said on Friday the U.S. unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to a two-year low of 8.8 percent in March. Nonfarm payrolls rose 216,000, more than the economists’ expectation of 190,000.
A separate report Friday showed U.S. manufacturing expanded at close to the fastest pace in seven years. These positive signs showed the world’s largest oil consumer is picking up momentum for the economic recovery, lifting the dollar.
New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley said he saw no reason to adjust the central bank’s loose monetary policy despite the encouraging jobs data.
The European Central Bank, on the other hand, is expected to raise rates next week, starting its interest increasing path in 2011.
Japanese policymakers are not likely to lift interest rates any time soon, either, which helped the dollar jump against the yen.