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The euro weakened for a seventh day against the dollar as Greek politicians struggled to form a new government after elections on the weekend raised the prospect of the country withdrawing from the currency bloc. The 17-nation euro extended its longest run of declines against the greenback since September 2008 as German Chancellor Angela Merkel rejected government stimulus as the way to spur economic growth, setting up a clash with French president-elect Francois Hollande. Alexis Tsipras, whose Syriza party placed second in Greek elections on May 6, said he would forge ahead with plans to form a coalition government of left-wing parties after he was handed the mandate by President Karolos Papoulias. Tsipras said he wouldn’t agree to join forces with New Democracy and Pasok, the two Greek parties that have supported austerity measures in return for international funds. He called on the leaders of both parties to withdraw their pledges to impose the terms in writing by tomorrow when he is to meet with both of them to discuss forming a government.
The pound dropped against the dollar as a report showed U.K. house prices fell in April. The pound declined from within two U.S. cents of an eight- month high against the dollar after an industry report showed a gauge of house prices declined. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said its index dropped to minus 19 from minus 11 in March. A reading below zero means more surveyors saw price declines than increases.
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