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Yesterday the euro gained from a three-week low versus the dollar as a U.S. manufacturing gauge unexpectedly rose and Spain’s latest budget and banking measures spurred bets the euro region is moving closer to containing its debt crisis. The Institute for Supply Management’s U.S. index of U.S. manufacturing rose to 51.5 in September from 49.6 a month earlier, the Tempe, Arizona-based group said today. A Bloomberg survey projected a reading of 49.7 for September. The dividing line between expansion and contraction is 50.
The 17-member currency strengthened versus all of its 16 most-traded peers after Moody’s Investors Service said Spain’s bank recapitalization is positive for the nation’s credit rating.
A gauge of European manufacturing based on a survey of purchasing managers was 46.1, above an initial estimate of 46 on Sept. 20, Markit said today. The index has held for 14 months below 50, indicating contraction.
Australia’s dollar touched the lowest level in more than a year against its New Zealand counterpart before the larger nation’s Reserve Bank holds a policy meeting tomorrow.
The Dollar Index, which IntercontinentalExchange Inc. uses to track the currency against those of six U.S. trading partners, fell 0.2 percent to 79.814 after rising earlier to 80.147, the highest since Sept. 11.
Bernanke said Fed policy makers “expect that a highly accommodative stance of monetary policy will remain appropriate for a considerable time after the economy strengthens.” The Fed’s forecast to hold the main interest rate near zero until at least mid-2015 “doesn’t mean that we expect the economy to be weak through” that year, he said in the text of a speech in Indianapolis.
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