Statistics depress hopes of US recovery
The figures depressed the dollar and gave the pound a fillip in late afternoon trading after a quiet start. Sterling closed 1.22 cents higher on the day at dollars 1.5057, its first close above dollars 1.50 for almost a fortnight.
The pound also rose against the beleaguered German mark during the afternoon, closing more than half a pfennig up on the day at a nine- month high of DM2.5461. The dollar closed almost a full pfennig lower at DM1.6910, also depressed in part by rumours that the Bundesbank had been selling dollars for marks.
The US consumer confidence index fell to 58.9 per cent in June from a revised 61.9 per cent the previous month. Wall Street economists had expected a rise of almost 63 per cent.
'The continued low level of consumer confidence suggests that the economy remains weak', said Fabian Linden, of the US Conference Board. Manufacturing employment and durable goods orders remained weak.
The 21 per cent fall in the annual rate of single-family new house sales in May was much larger than Wall Street had expected and the biggest drop since April 1980. But analysts warned that the fall followed an unusually strong figure in April.
President Bill Clinton said the fall in house sales illustrated the economy's short-term problems, adding: 'The economy will have great difficulty in totally recovering in any short period of time from the traumas of the last 10, 12 or 15 years'.
Further evidence that the US recovery may be slowing came with a 0.3 point drop in the leading indicator of economic activity, in line with Wall Street forecasts. However, dealers remained cautious ahead of the crucial non-farm employment figures on Friday and tomorrow's meeting of the Bundesbank council.
- 1 'Not suppost to cry': 9-year-old lists the worst things about being a boy
- 2 Lee Evans announces his retirement from comedy on The Jonathan Ross Show
- 3 Iggy Azalea responds to Eminem rape lyrics: 'I'm bored of old men threatening young women'
- 4 These grandmas smoking weed for the first time are wonderful
- 5 Pastafarian former porn star Asia Lemmon allowed to wear colander in driving licence photo
Duchess of Alba dead: Billionaire Spanish duchess who lived life by her own rules, dies at 88
New York snowstorm: Death toll rises to 10 as residents battle with further snowfall
These grandmas smoking weed for the first time are wonderful
Chelsea balcony collapse: Two people dead and six injured in London
Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Muslims pre-date Columbus in discovering America,' says Turkish president Erdogan
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Former Tory PM Sir John Major says 'we would not have an NHS without migrants'
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services
iJobs Money & Business
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Age Concern Slough a...
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Crossroads Care is s...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35,000: SThree: We consistently strive to be ...
£50000 - £90000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Markit EDM (CA...