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Friday August 14, 2009 - 10:25:10 GMT
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FOREX NEWS-Euro slips, yen rises as stocks struggle

Fri Aug 14, 2009 6:12am EDT

* Euro/dollar slips, dollar index little changed

* Yen rises broadly as some shares struggle

* EZ July inflation falls more than 1st estimate

(Adds comment, detail, updates prices)

By Naomi Tajitsu

LONDON, Aug 14 (Reuters) - The euro slipped on Friday, while the yen rose across the board as struggling share prices prompted selling in currencies considered to be higher-risk.

Risk appetite was subdued in quiet trade as U.S. stock futures came under selling pressure after Chinese shares fell 3 percent, while the dollar was little changed against a currency basket before a string of U.S. data due later in the day.

"The yen has been the main beneficiary of the moves in stock prices but in general, ranges have been tight for the major currency pairs," analysts at JPMorgan said in a research note.

By 0946 GMT, the euro EUR= had slipped 0.1 percent to $1.4250. The pair showed little reaction to a 0.7 percent fall on the year in euro zone inflation in July, slightly more than an initial estimate of -0.6 percent [ID:nBRQ007481].

The euro pulled back from a near one-week high around $1.4327 hit on Thursday when data unexpectedly showed the French and German economies both grew on the quarter in April-June, but the pair was on track for a 0.7 percent gain on the week.

U.S. stock futures SPv1 slipped 0.2 percent, while European shares trimmed early gains, although they managed to stay in positive territory.

The dollar index .DXY was slightly lower at 78.403, while the U.S. currency fell 0.3 percent against a broadly stronger yen to 95.10 yen JPY=.

The euro EURJPY=R fell 0.4 percent to 135.80 yen, while a broadly weak sterling GBPJPY=R slipped by the same amount to 157.35 yen.

The high-yielding Australian dollar AUD=D4 was flat at $0.8422.

The pair hit an 11-month high against the U.S. dollar of $0.8479 earlier in the day after Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens said that a normal interest rate would be well above the current rate of 3 percent [ID:nSYD342603].


Analysts awaited readings of U.S. CPI, industrial production and consumer sentiment later in the day to better gauge whether the economy is improving. ECON ECONUS [ECI/US]

A smaller-than-expected fall in July U.S. payrolls released last week had prompted some speculation that the worst of the weak U.S. employment situation had passed.

This had boosted the dollar, and helped to put the brakes on the recent trend for better-than-expected economic data to boost stock markets and other risky assets to the detriment of the U.S. currency.

"The market is looking at growth and interest rates more than it has all year," said Paul Robson, strategist at RBS in London.

He said this would support currencies like the Aussie on the view that Australian rates may rise soon, while adding that a significant rise in the dollar was unlikely until investors become more convinced that a Fed rate rise is on the horizon.

"The dollar needs short-term interest rates to rise more," he said.

The Fed earlier in the week held rates at zero-0.25 percent and said they would stay there for an extended period, while adding that the U.S. economy was showing signs of levelling out following the deepest financial crisis in decades. (Editing by Ruth Pitchford)

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