Investing.com - The dollar extended gains from the previous session against the yen on Wednesday, as data pointing to strong U.S. consumer spending in December bolstered expectations that the economic recovery will continue to gain momentum.
USD/JPY hit highs of 104.48, the strongest since January 10 and was last up 0.15% to 104.36. On Tuesday the pair rallied 1.1%, recovering from a one-month low of 102.84 struck on Monday.
The dollar strengthened after the Commerce Department said Tuesday that U.S. retail sales rose by a modest 0.2% in December, while core retail sales, which excludes auto sales, rose by a larger than forecast 0.7%.
The data offset concerns over last week’s surprising poor U.S. nonfarm payrolls report.
The dollar was also higher against the euro, with EUR/USD down 0.45% to 1.3616.
Earlier Wednesday, the World Bank revised up its forecast for global economic growth in 2014 to 3.2% from forecast of 3.0% back in June.
The dollar gained ground against the pound and the Swiss franc, with GBP/USD sliding 0.20% to 1.6408, and USD/CHF advancing 0.58% to 0.9077.
The Swiss franc showed little reaction after data released on Wednesday showed that Swiss retail sales jumped 4.2% on a year -over-year basis in November, outstripping expectations for a 1.6% increase.
The Australian dollar extended its pullback from Monday’s one-month highs, with AUD/USD down 0.82% to 0.8891, while NZD/USD lost 0.48% to trade at 0.8341.
Elsewhere, USD/CAD was up 0.37% to 1.0988, the strongest level since September 2009. The Canadian dollar remained under heavy selling pressure after unexpectedly weak Canadian employment data last week cemented expectations that the Bank of Canada will stick to its dovish stance on interest rates.
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was up 0.39% to 81.06.
Jerusalem Post Annual Conference. Buy it now, Special offer. Come meet Israel's top leaders