* Euro dips after ECB flags easing option
* Comments by Draghi, others seen capping any euro gain for
* U.S. retail sales up 1.1 percent in March
* Dollar up against rouble on geopolitical tensions
(Updates prices, adds analyst comments)
By Sam Forgione
NEW YORK, April 14 The dollar rose against the
euro on Monday after European Central Bank President Mario
Draghi signaled the bank could ease monetary policy further,
while strong U.S. retail sales data also boosted the dollar
against the yen.
Draghi said in Washington on Saturday that "a further
strengthening of the exchange rate would require further
stimulus". Bank of France chief Christian Noyer
hammered home the message saying: "The stronger the euro is, the
more accommodative policy is needed."
"A number of ECB officials are talking in more detail about
unorthodox policies," said Alan Ruskin, global head of G10
currency strategy at Deutsche Bank in New York. "All of that is
raising expectations that we're not that far from action."
The statements marked the ECB's strongest signal yet that it
would act to head off further gains in the euro. Traders have
watched closely for signs of additional stimulus measures from
the ECB to prevent deflation.
ECB policymakers ramped up talk of more monetary easing on
March 25, but comments from the central bank's policymakers last
Monday curbed some expectations by suggesting more stimulus was
The euro retreated around half a percent from close to 2014
highs against the dollar, but was still up from its low for the
year of $1.3476, which it touched on Feb. 3. Ruskin of Deutsche
Bank said the ECB would need to act for the euro to fall
further, and that current account surpluses in the euro zone
have supported the currency.
Capital rolling into Germany, the Netherlands and other
stronger economies in the euro zone have supported the euro,
which in turn has hurt countries such as Greece, Spain and
The dollar hit session highs against the euro, Japanese yen,
and Swiss franc after the Commerce Department said retail sales
increased 1.1 percent in March, marking the biggest gain in
1-1/2 years as receipts rose in nearly all categories.
The euro was last down 0.48 percent against the
dollar at $1.3817. The strong data detracted from the yen's
safe-haven appeal as well, with the dollar last up 0.16 percent
against the yen at 101.77. The dollar was up 0.4 percent against
the Swiss franc to trade at 0.8796 francs.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the dollar
against six major currencies, was last up 0.36 percent.
The retail sales data boosted the dollar, but the currency
largely benefited from the euro's weakness, said Nick
Bennenbroek, head of currency strategy at Wells Fargo Securities
in New York.
The dollar also advanced nearly 1 percent against the
Russian rouble on escalating geopolitical tensions
surrounding Russia and Ukraine. Pro-Russian separatists on
Monday ignored an ultimatum to leave occupied government
buildings in eastern Ukraine while another group of rebels
attacked a police headquarters.
The dollar was last up 0.88 percent against the rouble to
trade at 35.94 roubles. Bennenbroek of Wells Fargo said the
potential of the United States and European Union to impose
further sanctions against Russia has weighed on the rouble.
France's foreign minister said Monday that the EU could hold
an emergency summit next week to impose further sanctions
against Russia if there is no breakthrough at talks with Ukraine
scheduled for Thursday in Geneva.
"The longer the situation remains unsettled, the greater the
chance that there could be some further sanctions that could
impact the economy," Bennenbroek said.
(Additional reporting by Patrick Graham in London; Editing by
Tom Brown and Chizu Nomiyama)