The European common currency staged a steep slide against its major counterparts on Wednesday morning in Asia. The euro slumped to a 1-month low against the pound and a weekly low against the US dollar and the Swiss franc.
The euro has been trading lower since the Euro-stat report showed yesterday that gross domestic product in Europe declined 1.6 percent in the fourth quarter.
The euro tumbled to a monthly low of 0.8981 against the pound by 9:05 pm ET and the next downside target for the pair is likely seen at 0.895.
The sliding euro has lost around 6 percent against the pound since it reached a new multi-week high on March 18. The euro-pound pair is presently trading near 0.899, compared to yesterday's close of 0.9011.
The National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) study revealed that the economy of Great Britain contracted by an estimated 1.5 percent in the first three months of 2009, less than previously forecast.
However, NIESR warned that the figure should not be considered a signal of an improving economy, but simply a very small difference accentuated by rounding.
The Institute also said the decline in output is very similar to the recession that began in the summer of 1979. Following the 1980s profile, it said, would indicate a continued decline in output for up to another year.
Against the currencies of the U.S. and Switzerland, the euro plunged to a weekly low of 1.3179 and 1.5119, respectively in early Asian deals on Wednesday. This may be compared to Tuesday's New York session closing values of 1.3273 against the greenback and 1.5165 versus the Swiss franc. As of now, the euro is trading near 1.32 against the buck and 1.5135 against the franc.
The euro slumped to a 6-day low of 131.80 against the Japanese currency by 10:55 pm ET, compared to yesterday's close of 133.30. Currently, the euro-yen pair is worth at 132.24.
The euro reversed direction against the Japanese yen after it reached a new multi-month high on Monday. The pair has lost more than 4 percent thus far.
The yen gained ground today after a report from the Ministry of Finance showed that Japan's current account balance swung to a surplus in February, coming in at 1.116 trillion yen. That's down 55.6 percent on year, even though it beat expectations for a surplus of 1.071 trillion yen following the 172.8 billion yen shortfall in January.
At the same time, the trade balance was 202.1 billion yen, down 80.4 percent on year as imports fell a record 44.9 percent and exports plummeted 50.4 percent - also a record. Analysts had expected a trade surplus of 142 billion yen following the 844.4 billion yen deficit in January.
Looking ahead to the European session, the French trade balance and the Bank of France business sentiment index, German trade balance, current account and the factory orders report are expected.
In the New York session, the Mortgage Bankers Association's weekly mortgage applications report will be released at 7 am ET, while the Commerce Department's wholesale inventories report for February is due at 10 am ET.
Additionally, the Federal Reserve will release the minutes of the latest policy-setting meeting at 2 pm ET.
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