FOREX-Euro falls with more losses seen on growth outlook

Fri Nov 9, 2012 4:47am EST

Related Topics

* Euro hits 1-month low vs yen, near 2-month low vs dollar

* Investors fret over timing of Spain bailout request

* German economy ministry sees growth slowing

By Philip Baillie

LONDON, Nov 9 (Reuters) - The euro hit a one-month low against the yen on Friday and was seen susceptible to more losses due to weak euro zone growth prospects and uncertainty over aid for Greece and Spain.

The single currency fell 0.2 percent to 100.99 yen on the EBS trading platform. It was also down 0.1 percent on the day at $1.2733, close to a two-month low of $1.2717 hit on Thursday as problems in the euro zone dragged the single currency down to its lowest levels since early September.

Germany's Economy Ministry said on Friday that growth was likely to slow in the fourth quarter and the first three months of 2013, further weakening the outlook for the euro.

This followed comments by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi on Thursday that the euro zone economy showed little sign of recovering before year-end, despite easing financial market conditions.

Traders reported stop loss sell orders in the euro at around $1.2715. The currency could extend losses if it drops below this level, although traders also reported talk of an options barrier at $1.2700.

"It was really nothing new from Draghi yesterday and now we are looking at a game of chicken between Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and the bond markets for looking at a bailout," said John Hardy, FX strategist at Saxo Bank.

Investors are waiting for signals that Spain will apply for financial aid, which would allow the European Central Bank to buy its bonds, a measure that would lift the euro.

Spain, however, has so far resisted asking for aid. The prospect of ECB support has driven its borrowing costs down and it has met its 2012 bond issuance target.

The Greek parliament is due to vote on Sunday on its 2013 budget. The budget must be passed to unlock a further tranche of international aid.

CRISIS HITS CORE

Figures out on Thursday showed German exports slid at their fastest pace since late last year, adding to evidence that the euro zone's economic malaise has begun to take its toll on the bloc's economic powerhouse.

Data on Friday also revealed weak French and Italian industrial output in September.

"Germany has benefited from the euro zone debt crisis in a way because a weaker euro helped its exports. But Germany appears to be starting to suffer from deterioration in the euro zone economy," said Mitsuru Saito, chief economist at Tokai Tokyo Securities in Tokyo.

If Germany is not strong enough to support ailing countries, that would raise longer-term risk of a break-up in the euro zone, Saito said.

As the euro wilted, the dollar's index against a basket of currencies rose 0.5 percent to 80.824, close to a two-month high.

But the dollar lost ground against the yen, falling to 79.29 yen, its lowest in more than a week, though it held just above the Oct. 30 at 79.275.

The higher-yielding Australian dollar edged up 0.1 percent to $1.0407, staying away from Wednesday's 1 1/2-month high of $1.0480.

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