July 19, 2016 / 1:01 PM / 3 years ago

Dollar hits four-month high after better-than-expected U.S. housing starts

Four thousand U.S. dollars are counted out by a banker counting currency at a bank in Westminster, Colorado November 3, 2009. REUTERS/Rick Wilking/File Photo

(Reuters) - The dollar rose to a four-month high against a basket of major currencies on Tuesday after the release of data showing U.S. housing starts rose by more than expected in June.

Groundbreaking on U.S. homes surged 4.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 1.19 million units, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday.

The dollar index .DXY, which tracks the greeback against six major currencies, rose to 97.125, its highest level since mid-March.

The rise in the dollar index was backed by a sizeable fall in the euro EUR=, which dipped to an 11-day low against the dollar. The euro fell to $1.1011.

The dollar also gained ground against the yen JPY=, touching its highest level against the Japanese currency since the day after Britain's surprise vote to leave the European Union. The dollar rose to 106.42 yen, its highest since June 24.

Reporting by Dion Rabouin

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