EUR/USD extends gains on dovish Fed policy meeting minutes

The dollar slid against the euro on Thursday after minutes from the Federal Reserve's March policy meeting revealed monetary authorities unanimously voted to scrap a threshold that would trigger rate hikes.

A better-than-expected report on weekly jobless claims in the U.S. cushioned losses but only slightly.

In U.S. trading, EUR/USD was up 0.25% at 1.3890, up from a session low of 1.3836 and off a high of 1.3899.

The pair was likely to find support at 1.3673, last Friday's low, and resistance at 1.3948, the high from March 17.

The Federal Reserve Board of Governors unanimously voted to scrap a threshold that would hike interest rates once the unemployment rate hits 6.5%, according to the minutes of the Fed's March policy meeting released Thursday.

In the past, the Fed had indicated rates were set to rise when the unemployment rate hits or approaches 6.5% provided that figure accompanied a 2.5% inflation rate.

Today, the headline unemployment rate stands at 6.7%, not far from the previous threshold, labor markets remain slack and inflation remains well below 2.5%.

The Federal Reserve decision to do away with its rate-hike target left markets convinced that interest rates will remain low for some time to come, even after the U.S. central bank winds down monetary stimulus programs.

Elsewhere, the Labor Department reported that the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending April 4 fell by 30,000 to 300,000, the lowest since May of 2007, from the previous week’s upwardly revised total of 332,000.

Analysts had expected jobless claims to decline to 320,000, though the numbers did little to boost the dollar against the euro.

In the euro zone, Greece made a successful return to the financial markets on Thursday, raising €3 billion in its first bond auction since 2010, when Athens sought its first bailout.

The euro was up against the pound, with EUR/GBP up 0.32% to 0.8276, and down against the yen, with EUR/JPY down 0.31% at 140.86.

The Bank of England left the benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.50% earlier Thursday, in a widely anticipated move.

On Friday, the U.S. is to round up the week with data on producer price inflation and the preliminary report on the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index.