The euro dropped almost half a percent on Friday after signs that financial development could be slowing across the euro zone.

Euro zone business development slowed much quicker than anticipated for the current month, a widely-watched Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) survey showed.

The disappointing readings were hurried by a progressing U.S.-led trade war and will probably be of worry to the European Central Bank which is expected to draw a line under its 2.6 billion euro asset purchase program next month.

German private-sector development slowed to its lowest level in almost four years as factories in Europe's biggest economy churned out goods at a slower pace.

The single currency, earlier trading positive, dropped more than 0.4 percent to as low as $1.1402 after the surveys were distributed.

The euro also dropped 0.2 percent against the Swiss franc to 1.1326 francs.

"Particularly the German PMI was disappointing ... The environment for the euro is getting more difficult," said Thu Lan Nguyen, a Frankfurt-based strategist at Commerzbank, pointing to a dispute over Italy’s spending plans and concerns about the bloc's growth outlook.

"The economy in the euro zone has cooled significantly over the past months and unless this is just a brief interlude the European Central Bank might be forced to stick to an expansionary monetary policy," she said.

Weakness in the single currency supported the dollar, which increased 0.3 percent against a basket of currencies to trade flat at 96.706.

The dollar has lost ground for two consecutive trading sessions and is drifting lower from a 16-month high of 97.69 hit earlier this month.


The euro and sterling edged higher against the dollar on Thursday after Britain and the European Union concurred a draft content setting out their future relationship before a summit on Sunday.

Traders were cautiously hopeful about the draft statement concurred by the United Kingdom and the European Commission which outlined how the trading relationship, security and other matters will work once the separation is confirmed.

The euro and sterling traded slightly higher on Friday, having progressed overnight by 0.2 percent and 0.8 percent individually.

"A full read of the content suggests a lot of important details need to be clarified. ..this document isn't convincing the market that it will go through parliament," said David de Garish, director economics and markets at NAB.

Dollar skeptics are worried about the pace of future interest rate increments by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

"The Fed is most likely to climb rates in December. I don't see a shift in guidance at next month’s gathering as that would suggest that an important worsening in financial action is now occurring," said De Garis.

The Norwegian crown weakened 0.2 percent against the dollar as an overnight drop in oil prices weighed.

The yen was fetching 112.96, minimal change from its previous close. The Japanese currency has traded in a very small range with a soft bias over the last four trading sessions.

The Australian dollar, often considered a gauge for global risk appetite, weakened 0.2 percent to trade at $0.7237.

Analysts expect the Aussie to remain subdued ahead of a meeting between U.S. and Chinese leaders at a G20 meeting in Argentina at the end of the month, with markets watching for any signs on whether they may agree to de-escalate their trade war.

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