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US jobless claims dropped to 383K, a  significant  surprise – expectations stood on 410K. These numbers, much better than the disappointing Non-Farm Payrolls on Friday, send the dollar higher.

This improvement in unemployment is also seen in the 4 week moving average, which fell to 415K. An improvement in the job market is critical to the US economy. Employment always lags growth, but during this recession it was extremely painful.

On Friday, Non-Farm Payrolls have shown a very modest gain of 36,00 jobs, far worse than 130-150K that was expected. On the other hand, the unemployment rate fell to 9%, and the “real unemployment rate”, U-6 fell to 16.1%. U-6 includes in its count the number of people who are too discouraged to get out and search for a job. This was a point of light in the report.

EUR/USD is below 1.36, and more importantly below the support line of 1.3610. GBP/USD is testing the 1.60 line once again, after bouncing off of it earlier, when the British interest rate was left unchanged.

USD/JPY broke above the “intervention line” of 82.87 and above 83, currently trading at 83.11. AUD/USD is very close to parity. This comes despite good job figures very early in the day.

For more on the Euro, read the EUR/USD forecast.