The euro steadied on Thursday, rebounding from a one-year low the previous day, as the Federal Reserve released a more upbeat view of the U.S. economy, offering some respite for markets as Europe continued to haggle over a bailout package for Greece.
Asian stocks were broadly steady after the Fed pointed to signs of strength in the world's largest economy, but trade was cautious as investors worried Europe's debt problems may be spreading after Standard & Poor's cut Spain's credit rating overnight.
Analysts said the problems in Europe only served to highlight the strength of Asian economies, which have snapped back from the global financial crisis much faster than the West.
The mood surrounding the euro remains sour, said Satoshi Okagawa, head of forex and money trading group at Sumitomo Mitsui Bank in Singapore.
The euro was little changed around $1.3210 as investors waited to see if a fractious European Union, the IMF and Greece can agree on details of the bailout package in time for Athens to avoid a potential debt default.
The single currency was beaten to a one-year low of $1.3114 on Wednesday as Germany baulked at the aid plan, but recovered in late U.S. trade on reports that the bailout may be much bigger than anticipated and could be spread over several years.
Markets had feared that an earlier aid plan may only be enough to tide Greece over its first debt repayment hurdle on May 19, when Athens faces a maturing 8.5 billion euro bond.
Juergen Trittin, parliamentary leader for Germany's Green party, offered a glimmer of hope, quoting IMF chief Strauss-Kahn as saying the package for Greece would be worth 100-120 billion euros ($133-160 billion) over three years.
Rehn told Finnish television Greece would need tens of billions of euros on top of the 45 billion pledged by the IMF and euro zone governments for this year. Strauss-Kahn declined to comment on Trittin's figure, saying it was too soon to give details as the rescue package was not yet finalized.
While markets remain fixated by troubles of Greece, Portugal and Spain, Asian stocks drew support by gains on Wall Street after the Fed left interest rates near zero to spur the economy further. Major U.S. stock indexes rose as much as 0.7 percent. <.N>
Low borrowing costs and cheap money have helped fuel a massive stock market rally since early last year, though momentum has sputtered in recent months as Greece's financial problems escalated.
The MSCI index of Asian stocks outside of Japan was little changed by midday on Thursday, while Japanese markets were closed for the start of the country's long Golden Week holiday.
Crude oil prices also steadied on hopes that U.S. demand will improve this summer, with U.S. light crude futures easing but holding above $83 a barrel.
Gold was quoted at $1,165 an ounce after bouncing overnight on the back of the Fed report.
The U.S. dollar eased 0.15 percent against a basket of major global currencies <.DXY>.
(Editing by Kim Coghill)