The U.S. dollar finally gained ground against the Euro as well as the Yen as trading closed last week after speculation grew that the Eurozone and Japan are likely to announce monetary easing measures. These assumptions helped the greenback strengthen against the two currencies.
Euro loses strength
During the late Asian hours, EUR/USD inched down by 0.0040 or 0.36% to 1.0836. The Euro traded down after the European Central Bank’s President, Mario Draghi, stated that review and reconsideration of the bank’s monetary policy have become urgent. The comments point to more monetary easing measures to come in March when the bank will meet following the release of new economic projections.
Draghi added that the oil collapse should help some businesses as well as consumers but maintained that growth in the Eurozone remains under pressure. The Central Bank kept the deposit rate unchanged at -0.3% and the benchmark refinancing rate as is at 0.05%. The bank had cut the deposit rate in December. Further, the ECB sees interest rates at current or lower for an extended time.
Demand for yen weak
Meanwhile, the dollar traded up against the Japanese yen at last week’s close. The USD/JPY was seen trading 0.32% higher at 118.09. Sentiment around the yen weakened after Bank of Japan Governor, Haruhiko Kuroda, said that the bank is not considering a negative interest rate policy for the time being. This was indicative of the bank’s intent to continue its aggressive asset-buying policy.
GBP/USD gained momentum as well after a weak Thursday. The pair was trading 0.20% or 0.0029 points up at 1.4248. The Australian dollar also was trading high against the greenback with AUD/USD up by 0.25% or 0.0017 at 0.7016. The New Zealand dollar went the other way inching down by 0.21% to 0.6516.
Overall, the U.S dollar index was up by 0.39% or 0.39 at 99.53 at the close of the week.