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Wednesday November 19, 2014 - 22:57:51 GMT
Reuters - www.reuters.com

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FOREX-Yen in full retreat, Fed unalarmed by dollar strength

5:32pm EST

* Yen slides as speculators gun for 120.00 target

* Fed minutes dovish, but see little danger in dollar gains

* Swiss opinion poll shows gold vote likely to lose

By Wayne Cole

SYDNEY, Nov 20 (Reuters) - The yen slid on Thursday, striking seven-year lows against the dollar and a six-year trough versus the euro as speculators poured into carry trades funded by a tide of super-cheap liquidity from the Bank of Japan.

The dollar romped as far as 118.09 yen, up over a full yen in 24 hours and almost 10 yen since the BOJ sprang its surprise stimulus steps on the market at the end of October.

Likewise, the euro shot to 148.05, having gained 1.1 percent on Wednesday and more than 10 yen in 14 sessions.

The dollar had a brief hiccup when minutes of the Federal Reserve's last policy meeting struck a more dovish tone than its post-meeting statement had.

But they also showed Fed members were relatively unconcerned about the dollar's strength, a marked contrast to most other major central banks where weaker currencies are favoured.

"The Fed has left the green light shining brightly for further USD gains," said Alan Ruskin, global head of currency strategy at Deutsche.

"The USD/JPY take-profit zone still looks some way off -- a little ahead of the major 120 yen level."

Many investors seemed to agree, with a Citibank poll of its customers finding almost 40 percent expected the dollar to trade atop 120.00 yen by year end.

With the market focused on the yen, the euro moved only marginally on the U.S. dollar, edging up to $1.2553 EUR- and shy of resistance around $1.2600.

There was more action in the EUR/CHF cross, where the euro popped higher after on opinion poll showed a majority of voters were against a proposal to make the Swiss central bank buy more gold.

There has been speculation that if the plan passed, the SNB could find it hard to maintain its ceiling against the euro. The single currency was hovering at 1.2010 francs, while gold prices peeled off to $1,182 an ounce.

Another gainer was sterling, which firmed half a cent to $1.5680 after minutes of the Bank of England's last meeting were not as dovish as many expected. (Editing by Diane Craft)

Thomson Reuters 2014. All rights reserved.



 

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