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Section:

Dollar near all-time low vs. euro

From Reuters
Sunday, December 26, 2004

http://www.reuters.com/financeNewsArticle.jhtml?
type=businessNews&storyID=7180723

TOKYO -- The dollar held just off a record low against
the euro on Monday, but downward pressure
remained strong after a euro-zone minister showed
little concern over the European currency's recent
strength.

Dutch Finance Minister Gerrit Zalm was quoted as
saying on Friday that the euro's rise was still within
acceptable margins.

"Zalm's comments gave another push for the euro,"
said Tohru Sasaki, chief forex strategist at JPMorgan
Chase.

"I expect dollar-selling to continue through the
year-end and the New Year."

At 1940 EST, the euro bought $1.3525 compared with
1.3533 in late Friday trade.

U.S. stock and bond markets were closed on Friday
for a holiday.

The dollar was also little changed at 103.75 yen, while
the euro steadied around 140.35 yen, in sight of the
record high of 140.90.

Sasaki said the dollar could test the five-year low
versus the yen hit earlier in the month, possibly within
the next week, adding that Japanese authorities would
not likely intervene to stem the fall.

The dollar hit a five-year low of 101.83 yen on Dec. 2,
according to EBS data.

"When Japan conducts its next full-fledged intervention,
I think it will be a joint one with the U.S.," he said.
"I don't expect that to happen for a long time. At least
until the dollar falls below 90 yen."

Japan's top financial diplomat, Hiroshi Watanabe, has
said that solo intervention in currencies is less
effective than a joint one.

For the time being trading was expected to remain in
tight ranges until U.S. markets open later in the day.
London markets are closed on Monday.

A powerful earthquake that unleashed giant tsunami
waves across Asia on Sunday, killing over 12,000
people, weakened emerging currencies such as the
Thai baht in early trade. Major currencies felt little
impact.

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