Investing.com - The pound rose to more than one-week highs against the dollar on Thursday after data showing that U.K. retail sales jumped higher in February underlined optamism over the rapid economic recovery.
GBP/USD hit highs of 1.6640, the strongest since March 19 and was last up 0.25% to 1.6622.
Cable was likely to find support at 1.6553, the session low and resistance at 1.6665, the high of March 17.
The Office for National Statistics said U.K. retail sales rose 1.7% in February; recouping most of January’s 2.0% decline, and were 3.7% higher from a year earlier.
Market expectations had been for a 0.5% increase on the month and an annual gain of 2.5%.
Core retail sales, which exclude automobile sales, jumped 1.8%, outstripping forecasts for a 0.3% gain, after falling 2.0% in January.
Retail sales growth was led by food stores which contributed more than half of the overall increase in sales volumes, the ONS said.
Sterling rose to three-week highs against the euro, with EUR/GBP down 0.46% to 0.8275.
The single currency remained under pressure on Thursday after European Central Bank officials indicated earlier in the week that they are considering fresh policy options to stave off the risk of deflation in the region.
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