Investing.com - The pound pushed higher against the U.S. dollar on Friday, as data showing that the U.S. economy added fewer jobs than expected last month sent the greenback broadly lower.
GBP/USD hit 1.6400 during U.S. morning trade, the pair''s highest since February 3; the pair subsequently consolidated at 1.6389, gaining 0.40%.
Cable was likely to find support at 1.6273, Thursday''s low and resistance at 1.6486, the high of January 21.
The dollar came under broad selling pressure after the U.S. Labor Department said 113,000 jobs were added in January, less than the expected 185,000 increase. December''s figure was revised up to a 75,000 rise from a previously estimated 74,000 increase.
The report also showed that 142,000 jobs were added in the U.S. private sector last month, compared to expectations for a 185,000 increase. In December, the number of jobs created in the private sector was revised up to 89,000 from a previously estimated 87,000.
The U.S. unemployment rate ticked down to 6.6% last month, from 6.7% in December. Analysts had expected the unemployment rate to remain unchanged in January.
In the U.K., official data earlier showed that manufacturing production rose 0.3% in December, less than the expected 0.6% increase. Manufacturing production in November was revised down to a 0.1% fall from a previously estimated flat reading.
In addition, data showed that the U.K. trade deficit narrowed to GBP7.7 billion in December, compared to expectations for a deficit of GBP9.3 billion. The trade deficit in November was revised to GBP9.8 billion from a previously estimated deficit of GBP9.4 billion.
Sterling was higher against the euro, with EUR/GBP shedding 0.29% to 0.8302.
Also Friday, official data showed that German industrial production fell 0.6% in December, confounding expectations for a 0.5% increase, after an upwardly revised 2.4% gain the previous month.
A separate report showed that Germany''s trade surplus narrowed to EUR18.5 billion in December, from EUR18.9 billion the previous month. Analysts had expected the trade surplus to narrow to EUR17.3 billion in December.
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