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Dollar Gains Against Major Rivals On Results, Economic Data

The U.S. dollar rose against most of its major rivals and Tuesday and the dollar index surged to a 22-month high, with upbeat results and an unexpected jump in new home sales triggering the move up north.

The sharp jump in crude oil prices following the U.S. government's decision to stop granting sanctions waivers to major importers of Iranian oil contributed as well the greenback's gains.

Traders now look ahead to the U.S. GDP data for the January-March 2019 quarter, due on Friday.

The dollar index rose to its best level since June 2017, as it climbed to 97.79.

Against the Swiss franc, the dollar gained about 0.43% at 1.0202, and against the Aussie, it was up by about 0.5% at 0.7099.

The euro shed about 0.3% at $1.1190, while the British Pound Sterling declined about 0.4% to $1.2940 due to concerns over Brexit.

The Japanese yen, considered another safe haven, managed to eke out a small gain, edging up to 111.83 a dollar.

The Canadian dollar was trading at $1.3432 a dollar, compared to previous close of $1.3350, while the Swedish Krona was down 0.5% at 9.3543 a dollar.

The Commerce Department report said new home sales surged up by 4.5% to an annual rate of 692,000 in March after soaring by 5.9% to a revised rate of 662,000 in February.

The continued increase surprised economists, who had expected new home sales to drop by 2.5% to a rate of 650,000 from the 667,000 originally reported for the previous month.

With the unexpected spike, new home sales reached their highest annual rate since hitting 712,000 in November of 2017.

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