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Monday January 8, 2007 - 21:47:07 GMT
Reuters - www.reuters.com

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FOREX-Dollar slips from six-week high against euro

FOREX-Dollar slips from six-week high against euro
Mon Jan 8, 2007 4:25pm ET29

(Updates prices)

By Vivianne Rodrigues

NEW YORK, Jan 8 (Reuters) - The dollar fell from six-week highs against the euro on Monday amid speculation last week's rally on the back of robust U.S. employment data was overdone.

The dollar also fell against the yen as dealers awaited a possible Bank of Japan interest rate increase next week.

While the dollar eased from the day's highs, few saw this as the start of a renewed downtrend, especially in light of last week's strong December jobs data that cut the chances the Federal Reserve will loosen monetary policy any time soon.

"After last week's gains we were bound for a pause," said Greg Salvaggio, a currency trader at Tempus Consulting in Washington, D.C. "In the absence today of further data supporting the dollar, investors may also consider this an opportunity to buy cheaper euros."

The euro was little changed, up 0.02 percent at $1.3020 from Friday's closing levels and off a fresh six-week low of $1.2973 earlier in the day, according to Reuters data.

Against the yen , the dollar was down slightly at 118.78 yen as investors looked to next week's Bank of Japan policy meeting at which many expect it will raise rates.

But many viewed any BOJ rate hike as providing just a temporary boost to the yen, which underperformed against all the major currencies in 2006.

Even with a move up in Japan's benchmark rates to 0.5 percent from 0.25 percent, the yen would still be easily the lowest-yielding currency within the Group of 10 richest nations, with the euro zone at 3.5 percent and United States at 5.25 percent.

"The yen will trade in line with the BOJ's decision on rates," Salvaggio said.

The Swiss franc pared losses, leaving the dollar down 0.1 percent at 1.2361 francs, down from a session high of 1.2412, while sterling was up 0.4 percent at $1.9379.

Against the Canadian dollar the U.S. dollar was up nearly 0.3 percent at C$1.1754.

The U.S. currency also came under pressure earlier after news of an apparent gas leak that permeated large parts of Manhattan, prompting the evacuation of a number of buildings.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, however, said the odor was not dangerous and no unusual gas leaks had been found.

© Reuters 2007. All Rights Reserved.

 

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