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Currency exchange rates: How did the dollar do in 2012?

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Yuriko Nakao/Reuters/File

(Read caption) The word "Yen" is pictured on a Japanese bank note on top of a US dollar bill at Interbank Inc. Money exchange in Tokyo in this September 2010 file picture illustration.

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It has become an annual tradition here to summarize yearly exchange rate movements for some selected major currencies. 

In 2012, the U.S. dollar fell against most other currencies, with only the Indian rupee, the Brazilian real and the Japanese yen falling in value against it. The yen's big drop was the by far most dramatic change, followed interestingly by the big increase for the South Korean won. Since Japan's and South Korea's economies are specialiced on very similar things, like electronics, ships, and cars, and because they therefore are direct competitors to each other, this will create some problems for South Korean companies.

It should however be noted that the won's big increase in value relative to the yen comes after several years of big drops, and compared to a few years ago, the won is despite the big rebound in 2012, significantly weaker compared to the yen. 

(The changes below are changes relative to the U.S. dollar)

South Korean won: +9%
Norwegian krone: +7.3%
Singapore dollar: +6%
New Zealand dollar: +5.9%
Swedish krona: +5.6%
British pound: +4.7%
Swiss franc: +2.4%
Canadian dollar: +2.1%
Euro: +1.6%
Australian dollar: +1.4%
Yuan: +1%
Indian rupee: -3.4%
Brazilian real: -9%
Yen: -11.1%

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