Friday, September 26, 2008

European currency falls to 1-week low against Japanese yen, Friday, September 26, 2008 6:09:45 AM

Extending Asian session downtrend, the European currency declined to 1-week low against the Japanese yen and a 3-day low versus the Swiss franc during early European deals on Friday. The euro also remained down against the currencies of US and UK.

In economic news, Germany`s import price inflation remained stable in August at its highest level in nearly eight years on higher energy prices.

The Federal Statistical Office said today that the import price index rose 9.3% year-on-year in August, marking the same pace as in July, while quicker than the 8.9% increase in June. Meanwhile, economists had forecast the rate to ease to 9.1%. The August rate was the highest since November 2000. In the same period last year, prices were down 0.6%.

The French economy contracted 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in the second quarter, confirmed the initial estimate, a final report from the statistical office INSEE revealed today. The economy had expanded 0.4% in the first quarter.

The Federal Reserve, the Bank of England, the European Central Bank, or ECB and the Swiss National Bank or SNB revealed today that they are introducing operations to provide U.S. dollar liquidity with a one-week maturity using their reciprocal currency arrangements or swap lines.

The Federal Open Market Committee authorized a $10 billion increase in its temporary swap facility with the ECB and a $3 billion increase in its facility with the SNB. According to the Fed, these expanded facilities will now support the provision of U.S. dollar liquidity in amounts of up to $120 billion by the ECB and up to $30 billion by the SNB.

Against the US dollar, the European currency showed weakness during early deals on Friday. At 3:55 am ET, the euro-dollar pair touched a low of 1.4568, compared to 1.4610 hit late New York Thursday. The pair is now worth 1.4578.

The European currency that closed Thursday`s North American session at 0.7954 against the British pound edged down to 0.7940 at 5:05 am ET Friday.

The Bank of England said today that it will increase the term of its existing operations to lend US dollar funds against collateral eligible in short-term repos and US Treasuries.

Alongside an operation to lend funds overnight, the central bank will lend US$30 billion of funds for one week today. The Bank of England`s overnight dollar repo operations will be US$10 billion on Friday.

Against the Swiss franc, the single currency edged lower during Friday`s early deals. At 3:30 am ET the euro-franc pair slipped to a 3-day low of 1.5880, compared to 1.5937 hit late New York Thursday. The pair is currently quoted at 1.5891.

The Swiss leading indicator in September declined further to 0.62 points from a revised 0.73 points in August, the KOF Economic Institute said today. August`s reading was upwardly revised from 0.68. Economists were looking for a reading of 0.54 for September.

The euro that closed Thursday`s New York deals at 155.70 against the Japanese yen declined to a 1-week low of 153.50 at 3:55 am ET Friday. The euro-yen pair is currently trading at 153.86.

Core inflation in Japan rose 2.4 percent on year in August, in line with analyst expectations, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said today. It also held steady from the July figure, equaling an 11-year high. Overall nationwide CPI was up an annual 2.1 percent, matching forecasts after a 2.3 percent gain on year in the previous month. Overall inflation gained o.3 percent on month.

Across the Atlantic, the US final second quarter GDP, personal consumption expenditure and the University of Michigan`s confidence survey are scheduled for release later in the New York session.


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