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Euro Weak Before Week of ECB Decision

The euro was weak today, falling against the vast majority of its most-traded peers. US nonfarm payrolls did not have a lasting impact on the currency. While the euro sank sharply immediately after the release of US employment data, the shared…

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The euro was weak today, falling against the vast majority of its most-traded peers. US nonfarm payrolls did not have a lasting impact on the currency. While the euro sank sharply immediately after the release of US employment data, the shared 19-nation currency rebounded quickly just to resume the gradual decline it has been experiencing throughout the trading session.

Worse-than-expected macroeconomic data could have contributed to the euro’s weakness. Friday’s session started on a positive note as Destatis reported that German retail sales rose by 1.4% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis versus a 0.4% increase expected by market participants. But things quickly turned sour as the rest of the macro reports released from the eurozone were bad. The French trade balance deficit widened to €3.9 billion in January from €3.6 billion in the previous month instead of narrowing to €3.4 billion as analysts had predicted. Istat reported that Italian retail sales dropped by 3.0% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, while experts had predicted a significantly smaller decrease of 0.6%.

The major focus for markets, though, was the next week’s monetary policy decision of the European Central Bank. In particular, market participants want to see whether the ECB is going to change its monetary policy in response to the rising bond yields or prefer to stay pat. The potential for looser policy could be a big contributor to today’s weakness of the euro.

EUR/USD dropped from 1.1968 to 1.1915 as of 17:24 GMT today, reaching the low of 1.1893 intraday. EUR/JPY fell from 129.25 to 129.00, pulling back from the session high of 129.58. EUR/GBP managed to rise from 0.8610 to 0.8625, touching the high of 0.8652 intraday.


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