American focus: the dollar is under pressure
The euro climbed against the dollar, extending a monthly gain, as a report showed European inflation accelerated to a two-year high, indicating the European Central Bank may be moving closer to raising interest rates.
The dollar traded near a four-week low versus the yen as a measure of U.S. inflation watched by the Federal Reserve rose at the slowest pace on record. Norway’s krone and Mexico’s peso gained versus the dollar as crude oil increased on escalating protests in Egypt.
“The Fed is more focused on core inflation, and the ECB is more focused on headline inflation,” said Aroop Chatterjee, a currency strategist at Barclays Plc in New York. “That differentiates the potential monetary policy responses between the two. The question is on the European side of things. Does the ECB respond to the elevated inflation numbers?”
The 17-nation currency has gained 2.2 percent against the dollar this month as investors bet the ECB will raise borrowing costs before the Federal Reserve.
The Euribor rate at which European banks say they see each other lending for three months advanced to 1.074 percent, the highest level since July 1, 2009, according to the European Banking Federation.