The euro extended losses against the U.S. dollar on Thursday, as disappointing U.S. jobless claims dampened market sentiment, while mixed manufacturing activity reports from the euro zone also weighed.

EUR/USD hit 1.3637 during European afternoon trade, the pair''s lowest since December 20; the pair subsequently consolidated at 1.3641, retreating 0.86%.

The pair was likely to find support at 1.3544, the low of December 5 and resistance at 1.3775, the session high.

The U.S. Department of Labor said the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending December 28 declined by 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 339,000. Analysts had expected U.S. jobless claims to fall by 7,000 to 334,000 last week from the previous week’s revised total of 341,000.

In the euro zone, Markit research group said its final manufacturing purchasing managers'' index for the bloc remained unchanged at 52.7 last month, in line with expectations.

A separate report showed that Germany''s manufacturing PMI rose to a 30-month high of 54.3 in December, from a reading of 54.2 the previous month. Analysts had expected the index to remain unchanged last month.

France''s manufacturing PMI fell to a seven-month low of 47.0 in December, from 47.1 in November, compared to expectations for the index to remain unchanged.

Risk sentiment was also hit after a report earlier showed that China’s final HSBC PMI inched down to 50.5 in December from a reading of 50.8 in November.

The data was published one day after a government report showed that China’s manufacturing PMI fell to a four-month low of 51.0 last month from 51.4 in November and worse than forecasts for a decline to 51.2.

The euro was lower against the pound, with EUR/GBP shedding 0.33% to 0.8280.

Also Thursday, Markit said its U.K. manufacturing PMI fell to 57.3 last month from a reading of 58.1 in November. Analysts had expected the manufacturing PMI to ease down to 58.0 in December.

Later in the day, the Institute of Supply Management was to release a report on manufacturing activity in the U.S.

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