I hope all our readers of today’s currency note have had a good Christmas break and looking forward to a positive 2014. Here in the UK we have two days of holiday but in the US they only have Christmas Day and therefore yesterday we did have the release of some US data: the US jobless claims figures. These came in better than expected which, on a low volume trading day, boosted stock markets, increased bond yields as investors become more confident on the sustainability of the US economic recovery and weakened the US dollar. It just highlights how sometimes it is better to travel than arrive. Expectations were that the start of tapering would see a strengthening US dollar whereas the reverse seems to be happening as business confidence increases and the US safe haven status becomes less important. Today is a very quiet day on the data front although we do have some price inflation data out of France which could be more influential than normal given the dearth of activity. But here at Smart we are a hive of activity, available to help today, Monday and Tuesday, so please call your trader to get the latest exchange rates.