Sun, Oct 16, 2011 - Page 10 News List

Euro gains most since March 2009

Bloomberg

The euro rallied the most against the US dollar in more than two years on speculation the currency union’s political leaders would be able to resolve the region’s sovereign debt crisis.

The euro rose on Friday to a five-week high versus the yen as G20 finance ministers convened in Paris. The yen fell against all of its most-traded peers on bets Japanese authorities would take steps to limit its gains next week. Commodity currencies led by the Australian dollar rallied versus the greenback on signs of stronger global growth including an increase in US retail sales.

“Markets are feeling more positive about the European leaders coming up with a comprehensive solution,” said Vassili Serebriakov, a currency strategist at Wells Fargo & Co in New York. “The numbers still point to ongoing growth in the global economy and most importantly the US. It looks like a classic return of risk appetite.”

The euro rose 3.8 percent to US$1.3882 on Friday in the biggest gain since the week ended March 20, 2009. The shared currency advanced 4.4 percent to ¥107.20 after touching ¥107.45, the highest level since Sept. 9. The yen dropped 0.6 percent to ¥77.22 per US dollar.

Australia’s dollar advanced 5.9 percent to US$1.0340 in the biggest five-day advance since February 2009. The Aussie rose for a second straight week after losing 9.8 percent last month. Norway’s krone rallied 4.6 percent to 5.5627 kroner per greenback. The Canadian dollar strengthened 2.9 percent to C$1.0098 per US dollar.

“Risk aversion has come in lower,” said Camilla Sutton, chief currency strategist in Toronto at Bank of Nova Scotia. “Markets feel a lot calmer than they felt even a week ago.”

The yen slid after an improved economic outlook damped refuge demand and as Dow Jones Newswires reported government officials said they would take steps against a strong yen as early as next week. The steps may include more funding to encourage foreign mergers and acquisitions and won’t include a tax on currency transactions, Dow Jones reported.

The euro has strengthened 1.1 percent in the past month, while the yen has fallen 0.8 percent.

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