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The euro touched its strongest level in more than 10 weeks against the dollar before a German report forecast to confirm resilience in Europe’s largest economy. The 17-nation euro was set for its longest weekly winning streak versus the yen since April 2011 as Group of 20 officials meeting this weekend may discuss committing further resources to Europe’s debt crisis.
Japanese Finance Minister Jun Azumi said today Europe will be the central topic at the G-20 meeting in Mexico City. European officials will push other G-20 nations to commit fresh cash to the International Monetary Fund to help defuse the region’s fiscal crisis.
Japan is considering contributing $50 billion to the IMF’s European rescue package, the Asahi newspaper reported yesterday, without saying where it obtained the information.
Australia’s dollar rose, extending its second-consecutive weekly gain, as comments by Reserve Bank Governor Glenn Stevens that monetary policy is “about right” reduced investor expectations of interest-rate cuts.
The so-called Aussie strengthened versus 13 of its 16 major counterparts before reports that may show improvement in the U.S. housing market, boosting demand for higher-yielding assets. The currency maintained its advance after former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said he will challenge his successor Julia Gillard in a leadership ballot. Stevens and the central bank board unexpectedly kept Australia’s benchmark interest rate unchanged at 4.25 percent on Feb. 7 after making two quarter percentage-point cuts in the final months of 2011.
EUR/USD: during the Asian session the pair was in a range $1.3360-$1.3380.
GBP/USD: during the Asian session the pair corrected, after yesterday's growth.
USD/JPY: during the Asian session the pair rose, showed new month’s high.
German data kicks off Friday's calendar, with the released of fourth quarter GDP data and the Maastricht debt levels. At 1030GMT, the German government holds a press conference, in Berlin, with Greece, the IMF and G20 likely to dominate. A slew of UK data comes up at 0930GMT, with the release of the second reading of Q4 GDP, the December Index of Services and Q4 Business Investment. The main US data release is at 1455GMT, with the release of the Consumer Sentiment numbers. At 1500GMT, U.S. New Home Sales data is released. Also at 1500GMT, Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney speaks to the U.S. Monetary Policy Forum, in New York. At 1545GMT, St. Louis
Fed President James Bullard and San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams discuss a report on housing and monetary policy at the same conference. Late data, at 2115GMT, sees the release of the U.S. C&I Loans numbers.
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