The yen appreciated vis-Ã -vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the Â¥109.30 level and was capped around the Â¥111.90 level. Technically, todayâ€™s intraday low was right around the 23.6% retracement of the move from Â¥115.90 to Â¥107.20. Traders became more risk averse as crude oil is said to have printed above the psychologically-important US$ 100.00 figure for the first time ever. Growing risk aversion typically leads to an unwinding of short yen carry trades. Most traders expect Bank of Japanâ€™s Policy Board will keep the overnight call rate unchanged at 0.50% for the next several months. Dollar bids are cited around the Â¥108.95 level. The euro lost ground vis-Ã -vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the Â¥161.10 level and was capped around the Â¥164.05 level. The British pound and Swiss franc depreciated vis-Ã -vis the yen as the crosses tested bids around the Â¥216.50 and Â¥97.90 levels, respectively. The Chinese yuan appreciated vis-Ã -vis the U.S. dollar as the greenback closed at CNY 7.2934 in the over-the-counter market, down from CNY 7.3041 and the pairâ€™s lowest close since the July 2005 yuan revaluation. Data released in China overnight saw the CLSA December PMI survey improve to 53.3 while the CFLP PMI manufacturing survey slipped to 55.3. A government think tank estimates China will realize 2008 GDP growth of 10.8% with CPI around 4.5%.
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