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Dollar Rises as Gold, Oil Fall


NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The U.S. dollar was gaining against the euro and British pound sterling Tuesday morning on limited gains for the European counterpart and soft economic data out of the U.K.

Safety bids in Treasurys were also lending support.

The U.S. dollar was up 1% against the British pound at GBP 0.60640 and 0.1% higher against the euro at EUR 0.67528.

"The euro is struggling to extend its advancing streak to the eleventh session," says Brown Brothers Harriman Global Head of Currency Strategy Marc Chandler. "However, the main driver of divergent monetary policy stances remains intact."

Chandler says that a reflection of this is the three-month Euro Interbank Offered Rate's (Euribor) achievement of two-year highs Tuesday and the three-month London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) drop to its lowest level since March 2010 the same day.

On Thursday, the European Central Bank meets and the markets will be focusing on the strength of ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet's word choice on policy to gauge whether to expect another rate hike in June.

The British pound was falling in the face of the dollar as the UK Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index reading fell from a revised 56.7 in March to 54.6 in April.

Both gold and oil futures were falling amid the dollar's gain, with light sweet crude oil for June delivery down 1.2% to $112.22 a barrel and the June gold contract dipping 0.9% to 1,543.90 an ounce.

"For a change, crude oil is leading the [commodities] group down, as the impact of the Osama Bin Laden hit on Sunday has triggered a round of profit-taking," said MF Global analyst Ed Meir.

Treasurys were rising amid the sell-off of riskier assets such as oil, which was lending dollar support; though the effect of bin Laden's capture on the safety bid was marginal. "Risk aversion is happening, and ... there is a safety bid for Treasurys; it's helping the dollar, but I don't think it's bin Laden related," says UBS currency strategist Geoffrey Yu. "Positioning has been stretched for quite a while, and I think that's where the pressure points are. If anything, bin Laden's death should have reduced the terrorism risk premium and would have hurt Treasurys in the longer run," though only marginally.

The ten-year Treasury note was rising 3/32, diluting the yield to 3.269%.

PowerShares DB US Dollar Index Bearish (UDN) was trading sideways at $29.17 and PowerShares DB US Dollar Index Bullish (UUP) was flat at $20.97. CurrencyShares Euro Trust (FXE) was trading sideways at $147.69 and CurrencyShares British Pound Sterling Trust (FXB) was falling 1% to $163.82.

-- Written by Andrea Tse in New York.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Andrea Tse.

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