Manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia-region unexpectedly surged in May, bolstering optimism over the health of the economy, official data showed on Thursday.
In a report, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said that its manufacturing index jumped to 38.8 this month from April's reading of 22.0. Analysts had expected the index to decline to 19.5.
That was the 10th consecutive month of growth, recovering some of the previous decline but remaining below February's high of 43.3.
On the index, a reading above 0.0 indicates improving conditions, below indicates worsening conditions.
With regard to future activity in the sector, new orders deteriorated to 25.4, compared to the April's reading of 27.4.
The employment index also decreased to 17.3 in May, compared to a prior reading of 19.9, indicating a slower pace of hiring.
Immediately following the report that was released simultaneously with the weekly jobless claims, EUR/USD traded at 1.1124, compared to 1.1127 prior to the publication, GBP/USD was at 1.3015 from 1.3032 ahead of the release of the data, while USD/JPY traded at 110.62 versus 110.47 earlier.
The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was at 97.52, compared to 97.45 before the release.
Meanwhile, U.S. stock futures pointed to a lower open. The Dow futures fell 85 points, or 0.41%, the S&P 500 futures lost 7 points, or 0.30%, while the Nasdaq 100 futures traded down 4 points, or 0.07%.
Elsewhere, in the commodities market, gold futures exchanged hands at $1,260.15, compared to $1,261.47 prior to the release, while crude oil traded at $48.48 a barrel from $48.42 earlier.