Dollar rises after jobs data, Greek downgrade

AP News
Posted: Mar 09, 2012 3:31 PM
Dollar rises after jobs data, Greek downgrade

The dollar rose against the euro Friday and hit a 10-month high against the Japanese yen after a better-than-expected U.S. jobs report.

Traders also bought dollars after the Fitch ratings agency downgraded Greece even though enough private investors signed up for the country's debt restructuring plan.

The dollar fell to $1.3116 late Friday from $1.3270 late Thursday.

The dollar rose to 82.52 Japanese yen late Friday from 81.60 yen Thursday. It jumped as high as 82.63 yen early Friday, its highest point since April 27.

Employers added 227,000 jobs in February. Economists expected a net gain of 210,000. The overall unemployment rate was unchanged at 8.3 percent as more workers entered the job market.

In Europe, Greece said that 83.5 percent of private investors holding Greek government bonds were participating in a bond swap. Those investors will trade their bonds for ones with a lower face value and lower returns. The debt restructuring was needed in order for Greece to receive its second $172 billion bailout and avoid bankruptcy.

Fitch ratings agency downgraded Greece to "restricted default" over the bond swap. Ratings agencies Moody's and Standard & Poor's have already downgraded Greece into default.

In other trading Friday, the British pound fell to $1.5673 from $1.5825. The dollar rose to 0.9194 Swiss franc from 0.9087 Swiss franc.

The dollar was unchanged at 98.99 Canadian cents.