The euro extended losses against the US dollar on Monday, as debt concerns re-emerge in the region, after reports on Greece seeking debt restructuring and doubts over Portugal’s bailout.
EUR/USD fell to an 11-day low of 1.4274 during European late morning trade. The pair is likely to find support at low of 1.4206 reached on April 6.
The single currency came under pressure after a Greece daily reported that the country had asked for debt restructuring with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Union earlier this month, Forexpros said.
Correction pressures on the euro are originating from Moody's two-notch downgrade in Ireland's debt rating, the debt restructuring debate in Greece and Portugal's bailout process which is expected to be completed by mid-May, said a note from DBS Bank on Monday.
Moody's on last Friday cut Ireland's sovereign rating by two notches to Baa3 and left the outlook negative. It cited an expected decline of the Irish govt's financial strength and the country's weaker economic growth outlook as reasons to cut the country's sovereign rating.
Analysts said that the situation in Greece remains weak after the country received a bailout from the IMF and the EU last year.
German newspapers reported that EU experts estimate that Greece needs to clear away 40 percent to 50 percent of its debt, while German Finance Minister Schaeuble indicated that he is awaiting detailed analysis of Greek debt sustainability, said a note from RBC Capital Markets on last Thursday.
The euro was also under pressure amid doubts over Portugal seeking a bailout, after a party in Finland which is against bailouts to highly-indebted nations in the eurozone made strong gains in a parliamentary election on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the greenback traded higher against the British pound, amid subdued expectations over interest rate hike by the Bank of England next month, after lower-than expected inflation data last week. GBP/USD fell 0.29 percent to hit 1.6279.
The New Zealand tumbled against the dollar, after official data showed that consumer price index (CPI) in the country rose 0.8 percent in the first quarter this year against the markets’ expectations of 1 percent increase. NZD/USD was down 1.02 percent to trade at 0.7913.
However, the greenback traded lower against the Japanese yen, with the pair USD/JPY dropping 0.36 percent to hit 82.83.
USD/JPY retreated towards 83 after peaking at 85.54 on April 7, with last week’s slide coming on the back of persistent worries over the impact on supply chain production from the quake/nuclear crises. That said, USD/JPY is approaching two major support levels at its 50- and 100-day moving average, located at 82.56 and 82.70 respectively, said DBS Bank.