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FOREX-Dollar gains on positive U.S. economic data

By Karen Brettell

* U.S. data shows solid economic strength * U.S., China trade deal seen as mildly negative for dollar (Updates prices) By Karen Brettell NEW YORK, Jan 16 (Reuters) - The dollar gained on Thursday after multiple data releases painted a positive U.S. economic picture, reversing earlier weakness following the preliminary deal between the United States and China to de-escalate their trade war. U.S. retail sales increased for a third straight month in December, with households buying a range of goods even as they cut back on purchases of motor vehicles, suggesting the economy maintained a moderate growth pace at the end of 2019. A gauge of manufacturing activity in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region also rebounded in January to its highest level in eight months, and the outlook is the brightest in more than a year and a half, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said. Other data showed that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week. “The data flurry was positive, particularly the Philly Fed number,” said Greg Anderson, global head of foreign exchange strategy at BMO Capital Markets in New York. It “reduces the probability for a recession, which was low already.” The dollar index was last 97.329, up 0.10% on the day, after falling to 97.085 overnight, which was the lowest since Jan. 8. The dollar has weakened since the United States and China on Wednesday signed a deal in which China will boost purchases of U.S. goods and services by $200 billion over two years in exchange for the rolling back of some tariffs. But 25% tariffs on a $250 billion array of Chinese industrial goods and components used by U.S. manufacturers, and China's retaliatory tariffs on over $100 billion in U.S. goods, will remain. “For the dollar, it’s a mixed bag ... it should mean higher U.S. growth this year, but it also means higher foreign growth this year and less risks abroad, and that tends to pull capital out of the U.S. and be dollar negative,” said Anderson. The Swiss franc was modestly weaker against the greenback, after reaching a 16-month high earlier on Thursday. It reached 0.961 overnight, its strongest level since Sept. 2018. The United States on Monday added Switzerland to its watch list of currency manipulators, which analysts say could discourage the Swiss National Bank (SNB) from intervening to try to limit further appreciation of the franc. ======================================================== Currency bid prices at 2:28PM (1928 GMT) Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid Previous Change Session Euro/Dollar EUR= $1.1132 $1.1149 -0.15% -0.69% +1.1172 +1.1129 Dollar/Yen JPY= 110.1400 109.8800 +0.24% +1.18% +110.1800 +109.8600 Euro/Yen EURJPY= 122.62 122.52 +0.08% +0.56% +122.8600 +122.5100 Dollar/Swiss CHF= 0.9648 0.9641 +0.07% -0.31% +0.9652 +0.9614 Sterling/Dollar GBP= 1.3063 1.3036 +0.21% -1.48% +1.3082 +1.3026 Dollar/Canadian CAD= 1.3049 1.3041 +0.06% +0.49% +1.3056 +1.3032 Australian/Doll AUD= 0.6892 0.6902 -0.14% -1.84% +0.6933 +0.6888 ar Euro/Swiss EURCHF= 1.0742 1.0748 -0.06% -1.00% +1.0759 +1.0734 Euro/Sterling EURGBP= 0.8520 0.8550 -0.35% +0.78% +0.8562 +0.8510 NZ NZD= 0.6629 0.6616 +0.20% -1.59% +0.6665 +0.6617 Dollar/Dollar Dollar/Norway NOK= 8.8905 8.8610 +0.33% +1.28% +8.8936 +8.8470 Euro/Norway EURNOK= 9.8965 9.8794 +0.17% +0.60% +9.9116 +9.8710 Dollar/Sweden SEK= 9.4921 9.4616 +0.16% +1.55% +9.4978 +9.4528 Euro/Sweden EURSEK= 10.5685 10.5519 +0.16% +0.95% +10.5738 +10.5460 (Reporting by Karen Brettell; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Cynthia Osterman)