Investing.com - The pound moved between small gains and losses against the dollar on Tuesday, as the release of mixed U.S. data did little to shift expectations that the Federal Reserve will continue to scale back stimulus measures.
GBP/USD hit 1.6626, the highest since Friday and was last up 0.07% to 1.6595. The pair touched session lows of 1.6552 earlier.
Cable was likely to find support at 1.6472, Monday’s low and resistance at 1.6667, Friday’s high and an almost two-and-a-half year high.
Data released on Tuesday showed that U.S. consumer confidence rose to a five-month high in January, while a separate report showed that U.S. durable goods orders fell unexpectedly in December.
The Conference Board said its index of consumer confidence improved to 80.7 this month from a downwardly revised 77.5 in December. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 78.1.
Durable goods orders tumbled 4.3% last month the Commerce Department said, confounding expectations for a 1.8% gain. Orders for durable goods in November were revised to a 2.6% increase from a previously reported gain of 3.4%.
Core durable goods orders, excluding volatile transportation items, fell 1.6% in December, the largest drop since March, compared to forecasts for a 0.5% increase.
Orders for core capital goods, a key barometer of private-sector business investment, fell 1.3% last month, confounding expectations for a 0.5% gain and after rising 2.6% in November.
Investors were anticipating Wednesday’s policy statement by the U.S. central bank amid expectations that the Fed will cut its asset purchase program by another $10 billion, to $75 billion per month.
The central bank announced the first cut to its stimulus program in December.
Earlier Tuesday, data showed that the U.K. economy grew 0.7% in the final three months of 2013, slightly down from growth of 0.8% in the previous quarter, and expanded 2.8% from a year earlier.
On an annual basis, U.K. gross domestic product was 1.9% in 2013, up from just 0.3% the previous year, the fastest annual rate of growth since 2007.
The data looked likely to add to uncertainty over the Bank of England’s forward guidance, after data last week showing a sharper than expected drop in the U.K. unemployment rate heightened expectations that the central bank will raise interest rates sooner than anticipated.
Elsewhere, sterling was slightly higher against the euro, with EUR/GBP slipping 0.14% to 0.8232.
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