Berlin: The euro opened higher against the dollar on Monday, as markets looked ahead to fresh US data on everything from jobs to manufacturing and car sales in the coming week.
The now 16-nation euro, Slovakia adopted the common European currency on 1 January, bought $1.3921 in trading early on Monday, up from the $1.3854 it bought late on Friday in New York.
The British pound strengthened marginally against the dollar, buying $1.4540 as compared with $1.4471 at the end of last week.
Britain has been hurt by plunging house prices and tightened lending between banks despite record interest-rate cuts. Both the European Central Bank and the Bank of England will meet in the coming weeks, under pressure to trim interest rates, from 2.5% and 2% respectively, to help stimulate economic activity.
Cutting interest rates can undermine a currency as investors seek higher returns elsewhere. The interest-rate play for the pound and euro may be diminishing in appeal as their respective central banks appear set to chop rates closer to those in the US, Japan and Switzerland _ all hovering around zero.