Dollar rises ahead of Greek confidence vote

AP News
Posted: Nov 04, 2011 4:09 PM
Dollar rises ahead of Greek confidence vote

The dollar rose against most other currencies Friday after the Labor Department raised its estimates of job growth. Turmoil in Greece that could jeopardize Europe's plans for containing its debt crisis also drove the dollar higher.

Traders are watching a critical confidence vote taking place later Friday for Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou that could determine whether he stays in office. The country's uncertain political future could delay Europe's debt plan and may force Greece into a disorderly default that could hurt the global economy.

Papandreou is fighting for his job after his surprise announcement earlier this week that he would put the latest European debt deal to a public vote. He scrapped that plan Thursday following fierce opposition from other European leaders.

The euro fell to $1.3778 late Friday, compared with $1.3834 late Thursday.

In the U.S., a report that the economy added jobs in October eased fears of a new recession and helped strengthen the dollar.

The Labor Department said 80,000 jobs were added in October. The unemployment rate fell to 9 percent from 9.1 percent. The government also said 102,000 more jobs were added in August and September than first reported.

"The sharp upward revisions to the September and August reports was what made investors so enthusiastic," said Kathy Lien, director of research at GFT.

In other trading, the British pound was practically unchanged at $1.6040 from $1.6041. The dollar rose to 78.16 Japanese yen from 78.09 yen, to 0.8859 Swiss franc from 0.8784 Swiss franc and to 1.0173 Canadian dollar from 1.0079 Canadian dollar.