The euro strengthened to fresh highs against the US dollar and Japanese yen on Friday, as expectations of another rate hike by the European Central Bank (ECB) in the coming months supported the single currency.
EUR/USD rose to a 15-month high of $1.4405 against the dollar in Asian trading, before consolidating at $1.4387.
The ECB on Thursday raised the interest rates by 25 points to 1.25 percent, its first rate hike since July 2008, to check the rising consumer prices in the region.
The yen fell to an 11-month low against the single currency due to the widening yield differentials and concerns over Japan’s exports getting hit by a major earthquake that occurred last month.
EUR/JPY hit a high of 122.630, before trading at 122.48 yen, up 0.7 percent.
Analysts expect the yen to weaken further owing to interest rate differentials and economic impact of the devastating earthquake that hit the country on March 11.
The Bank of Japan (BoJ) on Thursday kept the interest rate unchanged at 0.1 percent and announced new lending programs to help the economy recover from the earthquake.
The dollar and yen are coming under pressure as investors are more comfortable with risk, Reuters reported, quoting Christopher Gothard, head of FX, Brown Brothers Harriman in Hong Kong.
Also, the greenback continued its weakness against the Australian dollar, slipping to a fresh 29-month low. The Aussie rose to 1.0539 gaining around 0.6 percent, buoyed by investor appetite for higher-yielding assets at expense of the greenback.