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Dollar Stays Firm On Trade Uncertainty

The U.S. dollar stayed firm right through the session on Friday and hit a three-week high as well in the process, amid renewed uncertainty about the much talked about rollback of existing tariffs by the U.S. and China.

U.S. President Donald Trump told reporters on Friday that he has not agreed to roll back existing tariffs.

On Thursday, there were reports that the two countries, the U.S. and China, had agreed to lift tariffs on each other's goods. However, there were also reports that the proposal to rollback tariffs was opposed by several advisers of the Trump administration.

A report from Reuters said the idea of rolling back tariffs faces fierce internal opposition from Trump's advisers. The report said that sources familiar with the talks told Reuters the idea of a tariff rollback was not part of the original October "handshake" deal between Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He.

The dollar index rose to 98.40 about an hour past noon and stayed firm around that mark thereafter. It was last seen at 98.38, up by about 0.25% from previous close.

Against the Euro, the dollar was at 1.1019, well off previous close of 1.1050.

The pound sterling was weaker by about 0.3% with a unit fetching $1.2776 as against $1.2815 late Thursday.

The Japanese yen was slightly up against the dollar, with a unit of the U.S. currency fetching 109.22 yen, less than yesterday's close of 109.28 yen.

The Aussie was quite weak against the dollar with the AUD-USD pair at 0.6859, more than 0.5% from previous close.

The dollar was up notably against the loonie and Swiss franc as well, at 1.3228 and 0.9974, respectively.

The Canadian dollar depreciated after data from Statistics Canada showed that employment dropped unexpectedly in the month of October.

The report said that employment fell by 1,800 jobs in October after an increase of 53,700 jobs in the previous month. Economists had expected employment to rise by about 14,700 jobs.

The unemployment rate was 5.5% in October, unchanged from September and in line with economist estimates.

In U.S. economic news, consumer sentiment in the U.S. has seen a slight improvement in the month of November, according to preliminary data released by the University of Michigan on Friday.

The report said the index of consumer expectations rose to 85.9 in November from 84.2 in October, while the current economic conditions index fell to 110.9 from 113.2.

The report said the consumer sentiment index inched up to 95.7 in November after rising to 95.5 in October. Economists had expected to index to tick up to 95.9.

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