(Adds comment, updates rates)
By Gyles Beckford
WELLINGTON, July 6 The euro fell sharply on
Monday in Asia-Pacific trading after Greeks looked to have
overwhelmingly rejected austerity measures demanded in return
for bailout money.
The euro initially fell about 1.4 percent against its U.S.
counterpart but trimmed its losses slightly to last trade at
The latest reports from Greece said around 60 percent of
those voting in the referendum had backed the government and
rejected the bailout conditions.
"This does two things: it legitimises the stance of the
Greek government and it leaves the ball in Europe's court," ANZ
Bank analysts said in a note.
"Europe either folds or Greece goes bankrupt; over to you
The next step was unclear with Greek Prime Minister Alexis
Tsipras saying his government had a mandate to reach a viable
solution and was ready to resume talks, while Germany and France
were seeking a euro zone summit on Tuesday.
The first test looked to be whether the European Central
Bank (ECB) would maintain emergency funding for Greek banks at
the current restricted level.
"The ECB will likely keep this open until it gets clarity
from political leaders. In any case, markets are in for a period
of uncertainty and protracted negotiation," said Bank of New
Zealand currency strategist Raiko Shareef.
The 'No' vote triggered a rush to safety with the yen being
the main beneficiary, with the euro down 1.6 percent against the
yen to 134.24 yen, while the U.S. dollar traded at
121.94 yen from 122.80 on Friday.
The New Zealand and Australian dollars, often taken as a
proxy for risk appetite, also trimmed early losses, but the kiwi
was down 0.5 percent, just above a five-year low at
$0.6645, while the Aussie was down 0.5 percent at
$0.7473, just above a six-year low.