Investing.com – The pound edged higher against the U.S. dollar on Friday, after U.K. third quarter growth data came out in line with market expectations but gains were expected to remain limited as sustained concerns over the spread of Ebola weighed on risk sentiment.
GBP/USD hit 1.6056 during European morning trade, the session high; the pair subsequently consolidated at 1.6050, adding 0.12%.
Cable was likely to find support at 1.5940, the low of October 16 and resistance at 1.6132, the high of October 22.
In a preliminary report, the Office for National Statistics said U.K. gross domestic product rose 0.7% in the third quarter, in line with expectations, after a 0.9% increase in the three months to June.
Year-on-year, Britain’s GDP rose at an annualized rate of 3.0% in the last quarter, as markets had anticipated, down from a 3.2% growth rate in the second quarter.
Markets were jittery after The New York Times reported earlier Friday that a doctor in New York City, identified as Craig Spencer, tested positive for the Ebola virus after returning from treating patients in West Africa.
Meanwhile, the dollar remained supported after a report on Thursday showed that U.S. initial jobless claims rose last week, but the underlying trend indicated improving labor market conditions.
The Department of Labor said the number of Americans filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending October 18 increased by 17,000 to 283,000, broadly in line with forecasts.
However, the four-week average fell to 281,000, the lowest since May 2000, while continuing claims, which counts people receiving benefit for at least the second month in a row, also hit a 14-year low, of 2.35 million.
Sterling was fractionally higher against the euro, with EUR/GBP easing 0.09% to 0.7882.
Also Friday, data showed that the Gfk German consumer climate index rose to 8.5 in October from 8.4 in September, whose figure was revised up from a previously estimated reading of 8.3.
Analysts had expected the index to fall to 8.0 this month.
Later in the day, the U.S. was to produce a report on new home sales.
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