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11.02.2013 07:11

Asian session: The euro touched a two-week low against the dollar

00:00 Japan Bank holiday -

00:00 China Bank holiday -

00:30 Australia Home Loans December -0.7% +0.1% -1.5%


The euro touched a two-week low against the dollar on signs the region’s economy is slowing amid political uncertainty in Italy and Spain. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has faced calls to resign after newspaper reports alleged he accepted illegal cash payments. Opinion polls have shown former Italy Premier Silvio Berlusconi, who was convicted of tax fraud last October, closing the gap on front-runner Pier Luigi Bersani ahead of elections on Feb. 24-25.

The 17-nation currency held a three-day loss versus the yen before data forecast to show industrial production in France fell and with finance chiefs from the bloc set to meet in Brussels to discuss aid to Cyprus and Greece. Industrial production in France, Europe’s second-largest economy, probably declined 0.2 percent in December from the previous month, when it rose 0.5 percent, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News before the statistics office releases data today.

The yen rose after snapping 12 weeks of declines. Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said the currency has been dropping too rapidly before Group of 20 finance chiefs meet this week. The yen’s 14 percent drop against the U.S. dollar in the past three months has spurred criticism from South Korea to Russia that Japan is competitively devaluing its currency. Finance ministers and central bank governors from the Group of 20 nations are scheduled to gather in Moscow Feb. 15-16.

The Australian dollar traded near the lowest since October. The statistics bureau said in Sydney today the number of loans granted to build or buy houses and apartments declined 1.5 percent in December from the previous month when they fell a revised 0.7 percent.


EUR/USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $1.3360-80.

GBP/USD: during the Asian session, the pair rose to $1.5805.

USD/JPY: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of Y92.35-75.


Monday sees data on both sides of the calendar, although it is a slow start to the session as much of Asia is on holiday to celebrate the Lunar New Year. The European calendar starts at 0745GMT, with the release of the French December Industrial output data. At 0815GMT, Bundesbank board member Andreas Dombret is set to speak on regulation at a Vienna banking conference. Back on the Continet, at 1200GMT, the EMU December OECD leading indicator index will be released. Eurozone finance ministers are meeting in Brussels from 1400GMT, with Cyprus among issues on the agenda.

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