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09.06.2011 10:40

EU focus: Euro steady ahead of ECB

The euro holds steady ahead of a European Central Bank policy meeting later on Thursday at which the ECB is expected to lay the groundwork for a rate hike in July, with any hints on tightening possibly driving the currency through key resistance.
The central bank is seen as likely to use higher staff inflation forecasts to justify a case for tightening in July.
While traders say the view that the ECB is likely to signal rising rates has already been priced in to the euro's advance, the move could still push the currency above resistance at $1.4700, which it failed to breach on Wednesday.
"The euro has been pressured by concerns over euro zone debt, so I think it would still have enough momentum to go above $1.4700 if the ECB suggests a rate hike," said Teppei Ino, currency analyst at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.
Ino added that a further break above a May 3 low of $1.4755 could help the euro climb even higher and the single currency could move closer towards resistance at its May 4 high of $1.4940.
The euro still hampered by uncertainty over Greece.
The greenback slipped back towards a one-month low.
The Federal Reserve's beige book summary of economic conditions confirmed that the economy slowed in May due to higher gasoline prices and the supply chain disruptions following Japan's earthquake and tsunami in March.
New Zealand's central bank held rates steady on Thursday but also set the stage for higher rates, saying hikes were needed as the economy bounces back from the Christchurch earthquake.




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