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Yesterday the yen climbed from an 11-month low against the dollar as investors wagered that its largest four-day decline since November may have happened too quickly. The Japanese central bank unexpectedly added 10 trillion yen ($120 billion) to its asset-purchase program at its Feb. 14 meeting and Governor Masaaki Shirakawa indicated the central bank will keep using monetary policy as a tool to tackle deflation on March 13. The Federal Reserve raised its outlook for U.S. growth at its meeting the same day, reducing expectations of a third round of bond purchases.
The pound weakened for the first time in three days against the euro after Fitch Ratings said the U.K. risks losing its top investment grade. The U.K. currency fell against 11 of its 16 major counterparts after Fitch changed its rating outlook yesterday on Britain to negative, citing a weak recovery and high debt levels. Fitch said its decision “reflects the very limited fiscal space to absorb further economic shocks in light of such elevated debt levels and a potentially weaker than currently forecast economic recovery.” The U.K. government is implementing the biggest squeeze on government spending since World War II as it attempts to reduce the nation’s deficit.
The Swiss franc climbed from a seven-week low against the dollar as the Swiss National Bank predicted the economy will expand 1 percent this year, twice as much as its previous estimate. Policy makers led by interim Chairman Thomas Jordan, maintained their ceiling for the currency at 1.20 francs per euro, and pledged to defend the cap with their “utmost determination.” The SNB forecast that consumer prices will fall 0.6 percent this year, before inflation returns in 2013 with a rate of 0.3 percent, accelerating to 0.6 percent in 2014.
EUR/USD: yesterday the pair rose in area $1.3100.
GBP/USD: yesterday the pair gain on a floor of a figure, closed day above $1.5700.
USD/JPY: yesterday the pair showed new year’s high, however fell below Y84.00 later.
On Friday EMU data sees the 1000GMT release of January trade data. US data starts at 1230GMT with CPI, which is expected to rise
0.5% in February after rising 0.2% in January both overall and excluding food and energy. Industrial production data follows at 1315GMT and is expected to rise 0.5% in February after holding steady in January. At 1355GMT, the Michigan Sentiment Index is expected to rise to a reading of 76.0 in early March from the 75.3 final February reading. Later on, at 1900GMT, Chicago Fed President Charles Evans speaks to the International Research eForum on Monetary Policy in Frankfurt. Late US data then sees the 2015GMT release of C&I Loans data.
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