ECONOMY

Euro near two-Year low before Greek presidential ballot

The euro traded 0.2 percent from a two-year low as Greece’s prime minister attempts to get his presidential candidate confirmed and avoid an early parliamentary election that risks severing the nation’s international lifeline.

The yen recouped earlier losses as Japanese stocks fell following a report a man is being tested for Ebola in Tokyo. The Aussie and New Zealand dollar rose amid signs China, the nations’ biggest trading partner, is taking measures to spur lending. The euro headed for a sixth month of losses against the dollar as European Central Bank President Mario Draghi worked to win consensus for sovereign-bond purchases by the central bank to revive inflation.

“The Greek vote should be something to watch out as a risk factor,” said Junichi Ishikawa, an analyst at IG Markets in Tokyo. “Improving fundamentals in the U.S. and speculation of fresh monetary easing by the ECB could lift global stock markets further, and if that is the case, the dollar could aim toward this year’s high against the yen before 2014 ends”.

The euro was little changed at $1.2188 as of 6:52 a.m. London time after depreciating to $1.2165 on Dec. 23, the weakest level since August 2012. The yen, which declined as much as 0.2 percent today, fetched 120.29 per dollar from 120.31 last week. It slid to 121.85 on Dec. 8, the least since July 2007. The Japanese currency was little changed at 146.61 euro.

[Bloomberg]