FOREX-Euro hits 2-week low, hurt by worries over Spain

by on September 26, 2012 6:25 am GMT

Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:25am EDT

* Spain protests, bailout hesitancy weigh on euro

* Euro support intact at 200-day moving average near $1.2826

* Dollar bids cited at 77.50 yen

By Masayuki Kitano and Lisa Twaronite

SINGAPORE/TOKYO, Sept 26 (Reuters) – The euro fell to a
two-week low a gainst the dollar on Wednesday, dragged down by
mounting worries ab out Spain’s r eluctance t o request a bailout
even as ant i-government pro tests turned violent.

Uncertainty over when Spain will seek external aid, a
condition for the European Central Bank to start buying Spanish
debt, has cast a pall over the euro, which pulled further away
from a four-month high set last week.

The single currency fell 0. 3 percent to $1.286 3,
having dipped to $ 1 .285 6 at one point, its lowest level i n two
weeks. It h as come back under pressure after hitting th e
fo ur-month high near $1.3173 early last week.

On Tuesday, protesters clashed with police in Madrid on
Tuesday, as the Spanish government prepared a new round of
unpopular austerity measures for the 2013 budget to be announced
on Thursday.

Demand for euros from some market players that were caught
off guard by its recent rally may lend the single currency some
support, but an y g ains are likely to be limited in the near
term, said Satoshi Okagawa, senior global markets analyst for
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in Singapore.

“I think what we’re seeing is a reversal of some excessive
moves that we saw earlier,” Okagawa said, referring to the
euro’s recent short-covering rally that had lifted the single
currency about 9 percent from a two-year low hit in late July.

Any rise in the euro to levels above $1.30 is likely to be
short-lived, and the single currency will probably have a hard
time staying above 100 yen, he added.

T he euro fell 0.4 percent against the Japanese currency to
9 9. 9 9 yen, having retreated from an intraday high of
100.46 yen.

Against the dollar, possible support for the euro lies near
$1.2826, its 200-day moving average.

“The euro should find support at levels around $1.28… If
that is breached, I think that would suggest that a try for the
upside has ended,” said a trader for a European bank in Tokyo,
adding that the euro may then start falling towards $1.25.

The euro’s retreat helped lift the yen, with the dollar
easing 0.1 percent to 77.75 yen, n ot too far from a
seven-month low of 77.13 yen hit on Sept. 13, the day the U.S.
Federal Reserve announced aggressive monetary stimulus to
promote the economy’s recovery.

The dollar could ease toward 77.50 yen in the near term, but
the U.S. currency may then rebound as there are heavy dollar
bids at that level, said Yuji Saito, director of foreign
exchange at Credit Agricole in Tokyo.

Traders say the yen could get a lift this week from Japanese
fund repatriation ahead of half-year book-closings, although
some market participants said many companies had already covered
their needs so such flows were unlikely to be significant.