Euro Rises On Strong Spanish, French Bond Auctions

Published January 19, 2012 8:18PM (EST)

NEW YORK (AP) — The euro rose against the dollar Thursday following successful auctions of debt by Spain and France.

That's a sign that investor confidence in the two countries is improving, even though both had their credit ratings downgraded by Standard & Poor's last week.

Traders also bought euros on better U.S. jobs data. The number of people applying for unemployment benefits last week fell to the lowest level since April 2008.

The euro rose to $1.2936 in late trading Thursday from $1.2841 late Wednesday.

Investors tend to buy riskier currencies, such as the euro, and sell safer ones, such as the dollar, when they believe the global economy is improving.

The dollar weakened against most other currencies Thursday.

The British pound rose to $1.5467 from $1.5427. The dollar fell to 0.9340 Swiss franc from 0.9406 and to 1.0119 Canadian dollar from 1.0126.

However, the dollar rose to 77.17 Japanese yen from 76.80.

By Salon Staff

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