* WSJ story on German concession possibility spurs
* Dollar under pressure broadly as US data eyed
* Yen slides after Moody's follows Fitch in cutting Japan
* Kiwi shines, hits fresh post-float high
By Hideyuki Sano
TOKYO, May 31 The euro rose to a three-week
peak against the dollar on Tuesday after a wave of
short-covering triggered by a report saying Germany could make
concessions on efforts to put together a bailout for Greece,
with traders eyeing $1.45 as its next target.
Germany is considering dropping its push for an early
rescheduling of Greek bonds in order to facilitate a new
package of aid loans for Greece, the Wall Street Journal
reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
"The euro zone problems appear to be subsiding for now. Or
putting it another way, the market appears to have stopped
looking at them as a factor for now," said Teppei Ino, a
currency analyst at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, adding that
the market could now focus on the heavy schedule for U.S. data
releases this week.
The euro rose as high as $1.4407 EUR=, its highest in
three weeks, piercing its 55-day moving average of $1.4334 and
also $1.4373, the top of the Ichimoku cloud on the daily chart.
"The euro has gone through all the stop-loss levels I heard
about this morning. It is very strong on the charts, and it's
bouncing back now having hit a double-bottom of $1.4048 on May
16 and $1.3968 on May 2
3," said a trader at a Japanese bank.
"It also breached resistance at the top of the Ichimoku
cloud, and the nearest resistance is seen at $1.45," said the
trader adding that the level has become crucial after the euro
moved around it in mid-April.
The European Union is racing to draft a second bailout
package for Greece to release vital loans next month and avert
the risk of it defaulting, EU officials said on Monday.
Jean-Claude Juncker, the chairman of euro zone finance
ministers, said he was optimistic after discussing further aid
for Athens with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris.
Moves to plug a looming funding gap for 2012 and 2013
accelerated after the International Monetary Fund said last
week it will withhold the next tranche of aid due on June 29
unless the EU guarantees to meet Athens' funding needs for next
The dollar's index against a basket of currencies fell to
its lowest level in three weeks, losing 0.5 percent to 74.568
.DXY =USD, having broken below support on the Ichimoku
cloud bottom at 74.89.
The dollar has been hurt by a recent batch of disappointing
U.S. data, with many traders thinking that important numbers
this week, such as ISM manufacturing and payroll data, could
cement the view that the U.S. recovery may remain slow for now.
"The dollar came under pressure ahead of U.S. jobs data
and manufacturing figures due this week. Macro funds are
offloading positions in the dollar as they expect slightly
weaker figures after a bout of weak data earlier this month,"
said Koji Fukaya, chief currency analyst at Credit Suisse in
The dollar also fell 0.2 percent against the Swiss franc to
0.85 franc CHF=, a stone's throw from a record low of 0.8457
hit on Monday while the pound rose 0.4 percent to $1.6543
GBP=D4, its highest in four weeks.
The Australian dollar also gained 0.23 percent to $1.0713
AUD=D4, quickly recovering from small losses posted after
weaker-than-expected Australian export data.
The New Zealand dollar did even better, jumping 1.0 percent
to as high as $0.8264 NZD=D4, a fresh post-float high
The yen failed to benefit from overall dollar weakness,
slipping after Moody's said it had placed its rating on Japan
under review for possible downgrade, less than a week after
rival rating firm Fitch cut its outlook on Japan's debt.
The dollar gained 0.36 percent to 81.23 yen JPY= while
the euro jumped more than 1.3 percent to 116.88 yen, its
highest since May 20.
The euro moved from near its support at its 100-day moving
average at 115.32 yen to 116.77 yen, zeroing in on immediate
resistance at its 55-day moving average at 117.43 yen. The yen
also dropped 0.8 percent against sterling GBPJPY=R.
(Additional reporting by Antoni Slodkowski and Masayuki
Kitano; Editing by Joseph Radford)