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Investor attention is turning to the Europe ahead of Sunday’s first round of voting in France’s presidential election.

Nerves were building, too, in the wake of a shooting on the Champs-Élysées, central Paris, yesterday in an apparent Islamist terror attack that threatens to disrupt the final days of the nation’s presidential campaign.

The euro trimmed early declines to trade flat at $1.0718 on Friday, having gained 0.1 per cent yesterday. The single currency has advanced in four of the past five sessions and is hovering close to its highest level in a month.

The yield on the benchmark French government 10-year bond shed 2.7 basis points on Thursday to 0.921 per cent, while the equivalent-duration yield for German bonds climbed 4.1bps to 0.242 per cent.

The yen was 0.1 per cent firmer at ¥109.25 per dollar, rising in the wake of a survey that showed a solid gain in domestic manufacturing activity in April.

The British pound was down 0.1 per cent at $1.2803. This week, UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s decision to call a snap election saw sterling jump by 2.2 per cent to its strongest level since October.

The dollar index, a measure of the US currency against a basket of global peers, was fractionally higher at 99.803.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2018. All rights reserved.

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