The euro appreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested offers around the US$ 1.2965
level and was supported around the $1.2790 level.Results of stress tests on the largest
European banks were released today and they confirmed most financial
institutions have sufficient capital to absorb soverign debt-related
problems.Some dealers doubted the
reliability of the exams.European
Central Bank member Nowotny reported the tests conducted on 91 banks revealed
the European banking system is in a â€śstable and promisingâ€ť position.ECB policymakers revealed seven of 91 banks
failed the European Unionâ€™s stress tests and noted todayâ€™s results should
increase confidence in the eurozone.Data released in the eurozone today saw the July PMI composite improve
to 56.7 from the prior reading of 56.0 while EMU-16 PMI services and
manufacturing improved.Also, EMU-16 May
industrial new orders were up 3.8% m/m and 22.7% y/y.Moreover, EMU-16 July consumer confidence
improved to -14 from the revised reading of -17.German July PMI manufacturing and services
improved and data to be released tomorrow include July Ifo business
sentiment.French data released today
saw July PMI manufacturing decline while PMI services moved higher.French July consumer confidence remained
unchanged at -39.In U.S. news, data released in the U.S. this week saw weekly
initial jobless claims climb to 464,000 from a revised 427,000 while continuing
jobless claims climbed to 4.487 million from 4.710 million.Also, June existing home sales were off 5.1%
m/m to an annualized 5.37 million units while June leading indicators came off 0.2%
from the previous tally of 0.5%.Also,
the May house price index printed at +0.5% m/m, down from +0.9%.Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke this week
called for an extension of the Bush tax cuts and cited the elevated U.S.
unemployment rate as the biggest problem in the U.S. economy.Bernanke also cited additional monetary
easing options including reducing the rate paid on banksâ€™ reserves held at the
Fed and purchasing more securities.New
York Fed President Dudley reported said the â€śroad to recovery is turning out to
be a bit bumpy.â€ťEuro offers are
cited around the US$ 1.3265 level.
The yen depreciated
vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers around the ÂĄ87.50
level and was supported around the ÂĄ86.75 level. Bank of Japan issued a report that noted
emerging market economies need to begin tightening monetary policy to avert
overheating.The pair moved higher on an
improvement in asset prices including equities as risk appetite bettered.Traders may have steered away of testingthe resolve of the Japanese government to
intervene in a bid to stop the yenâ€™s appreciation.The government has not officially intervened
for several years but there are increasing whispers that Japanese monetary
authorities will try to protect the ÂĄ85 level.Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Yamaguchi this week suggested the central
bank is considering other policy options, noting â€śWays to strengthen the
foundations for economic growth are not necessarily limited to the measure the
bank has introduced.We will continue to
make sufficient considerations while exploring various possibilities.â€ť Minutes
from the June BoJ Policy Board were released this week in which policymakers
said the central bank should consider additional policy options other than the
ÂĄ3 trillion loan scheme recently announced. Vice finance minister Ikeda said
the government â€śwants to avoid excessive gains in the yenâ€ť while trade minister
Naoshima said the yenâ€™s gains pose a threat to economic growth.The governmentâ€™s ability to provide
additional fiscal stimulus is limited by its commitment to cap annual fiscal
spending at ÂĄ71 trillion.The Nikkei 225
stock index climbed 2.28% to close at ÂĄ9,430.96.U.S. dollar bids are cited around the ÂĄ86.29
moved higher vis-Ă -vis the yen as the single currency tested offers around
the ÂĄ113.00 figure and was supported around the ÂĄ111.55 level.The
British pound moved higher vis-Ă -vis the yen as sterling tested offers around
the ÂĄ135.00 figure while the Swiss franc
moved lower vis-Ă -vis the yen and tested bids around the ÂĄ82.65 level. In Chinese news, the U.S. dollar appreciated
vis-Ă -vis the Chinese yuan as the greenback closed at CNY 6.7799 in the
over-the-counter market, up from CNY 6.7797. A Chinese source reported Chinese banks may
struggle to recover approximately 23% of the CNY 7.7 trillion in loans to local
government infrastructure projects.Peopleâ€™s
Bank of China set its daily fixing rate at the strongest level this week and
yesterday said it may begin to publish the yuanâ€™s exchange rate against a
basket of currency and not just the U.S. dollar.PBoC also warned Chinese home prices may fall
British pound appreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested offers
around the US$ 1.5450 level and was supported around the US$ 1.5250 level.Data released in the U.K. today saw Q2 gross
domestic product climb 1.1% q/q and 1.6% y/y while June BBA loans for house
purchases moved higher and the May index of services improved.Minutes from the July Bank of England
Monetary Policy Committee meeting were released this week in which policymakers
voted 7-to-1 to keep the Bank rate unchanged at 0.5%.The minutes read â€śOn balance, most members
thought that it was appropriate to leave the stance of monetary policy
unchanged. The committee considered arguments in favour of a modest easing in
the stance of monetary policy. The softening in the medium-term outlook for GDP
growth over recent months would put further downwards pressure on inflation,
once the impact of temporary factors had waned.â€ť MPC member Sentance voted
again to raise interest rates.There is
talk of a possible three-way split on the MPC this year if one or more
policymakers voted to expand policy accommodation.Some believe the MPC may resort to increasing
its asset purchase program. Cable bids are cited around the US$ 1.5140
level.The euro depreciated vis-Ă -vis the British pound as the single
currency tested bids around the ÂŁ0.8315 level and was capped around the ÂŁ0.8450
franc depreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers
around the CHF 1.0565 level and was supported around the CHF 1.0405 level. Data to be released in Switzerland on 27 July
include the June UBS consumption indicator.UBS reported the Swiss National Bank may intervene again if the euro/
franc rate falls â€śsharply.â€ťSNB reported
its euro holdings doubled in the second quarter on intervention.Most dealers believe SNB has been forced to
intervene less on account of all of the euro-denominated assets on its balance
sheet but some note the SNB will likely continue to intervene at opportune
levels.U.S. dollar offers are cited
around the CHF 1.0980 level.The euro appreciated vis-Ă -vis the
Swiss franc as the single currency tested offers around the CHF 1.3605 level
while the British pound moved higher
vis-Ă -vis the Swiss franc and tested offers around the CHF 1.6270 level.
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