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Pound Little Changed Versus Dollar Before PMI Construction Data

June 4 (Bloomberg) -- The pound was little changed against the dollar and euro before a report that economists said will show U.K. construction shrank for a seventh month in May.

A gauge based on a survey of purchasing managers in construction industries rose to 49.8 from 49.4 in April, Markit Economics and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply will say today, according to the median of 14 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. A reading below 50 indicates contraction. The Debt Management Office is scheduled to auction 1.6 billion pounds ($2.45 billion) of inflation-linked gilts due in 2024.

The pound traded at $1.5304 at 7:48 a.m. London time after rising to $1.5376 yesterday, the most since May 13. Sterling was at 85.34 pence per euro.

Separate data showed a gauge of U.K. retail sales rose in May. Sales at stores open at least 12 months, measured by value, increased 1.8 percent from a year earlier, the British Retail Consortium and KPMG said in an e-mailed report.

The pound has fallen 2.4 percent this year, the worst performer after the yen and Australian dollar among the 10 developed-nation currencies tracked by Bloomberg Correlation-Weighted Indexes. The U.S. currency gained 4.4 percent and the euro strengthened 3.2 percent.

U.K. gilts lost 1.1 percent this year through yesterday, according to the Bloomberg British Sovereign Bond Index. German bonds dropped 0.8 percent and U.S. Treasuries declined 0.9 percent, separate indexes show.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lucy Meakin in London at lmeakin1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Dobson at pdobson2@bloomberg.net

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