Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Dollar Mostly Higher As Euro Issues Flare Anew

Following up on Mark’s post, renewed euro-zone fiscal worries are giving the dollar a boost against the euro. After rising to $1.43 last week, the euro is back below $1.40, which is what most euro-zone policy mandarins would like to see.

The dollar is broadly stronger, trading higher against the pound, Swiss franc, Canadian dollar and Australian dollar. It is, however, weaker against the yen.

Euro weakness comes even as Greece enjoys a rare happy moment. The ruling Socialists did well in local elections over the weekend, giving it a boost. The ASE index in Athens is up more than 2% in an otherwise down day for Europe. Credit spreads, however, remained little changed.

Meantime, Ireland continues to grapple with its own problems and may soon join Greece in the euro-zone intensive care unit. EU Commissioner Olli Rehn visits Dublin Monday as Ireland’s credit insurance costs rise to record levels and nudge into the territory where Greece sparked the euro-zone crisis earlier this year. A story in the New York Times focused on the Irish debt situation is also weighing on Ireland and the euro

Dublin shares are off 0.4%.

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