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The yen dropped against the dollar for the first time in three days as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told central-bank governor Masaaki Shirakawa he wants the Bank of Japan to double its inflation goal to 2 percent. Japan’s currency slid versus all of its 16 most-traded peers after Shirakawa said the BOJ was in close contact with the government, adding to bets policy makers will boost stimulus that tends to debase the yen. The bank meets next week. The yen declined versus major peers as Abe talked with Shirakawa at a meeting of Japan’s Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy in Tokyo. The regular gatherings resumed today after being abolished by the previous government. Minutes will become available three business days after the meetings are held, according to the Cabinet Office.
The euro fell for a second day against the greenback before the European Central Bank meets tomorrow. The ECB will keep its main refinancing rate at a record-low 0.75 percent tomorrow, according to the median forecast of 55 analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Five predicted the central bank will lower the rate to 0.5 percent. Also today published the final Eurozone GDP, which are fully consistent with the projections. Later also presented a report on industrial production in Germany, which showed an increase of 0.2%, while analysts had expected an increase of 1.1%.
Pound decreased, which was due to the publication of data showing that the trade deficit fell less than expected. Office for National Statistics said that the trade deficit narrowed to 9.164 billion pounds from 9.487 billion pounds in October, while economists forecast a reduction in the deficit to 9.05 billion pounds.
The Canadian dollar was able to regain some lost ground against the dollar after data on Canada's housing market in December, were slightly better than forecast. The number of housing starts in Canada in December fell by 1.7% compared to November and adjusted for seasonal variation was 197,976 homes a year. This figure was slightly worse than expected. According to the forecast, the number of bookmarks in December should have been 195,000 homes a year.
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