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The euro dropped the most in two months against the dollar as services and manufacturing in the region shrank to a three-year low, adding to evidence the central bank will need to do more to spur growth.
The yen and the dollar strengthened against most of their major counterparts as demand for the perceived safety of those nations’ assets increased after separate reports showed China’s manufacturing and Japanese exports declined for a third month.
A preliminary reading was 47.8 for a China purchasing managers’ index released today by HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA) and Markit Economics, compared with a final level of 47.6 last month. Japan’s overseas shipments slid 5.8 percent on weakness in demand from Europe and China.
The euro weakened against most of its 16 major peers even after Spain’s borrowing costs fell at a 4.8 billion-euro auction of three- and 10-year debt, the biggest since January. The sale came amid expectations the nation will ask the European Central Bank to buy its debt.
A composite index based on a survey of purchasing managers in euro-area services and manufacturing industries dropped to 45.9 for September, the lowest since June 2009, London-based Markit Economics said in an initial estimate. A reading below 50 indicates contraction.
Australia’s currency fell as the Chinese data clouded the prospects for the South Pacific nation’s resource exports.
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