The euro came off vis-Ã -vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested bids around the US$ 1.3145 level and was capped around the US$ 1.3305 level. Minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee€™s meeting that concluded on 18 March wer released in which the FOMC agreed on €œsubstantial purchases of longer-term assets€ and pessimisitcally said €œfurther employment cutbacks€ were expected. Some Fed officials saw inflation €œbelow desirable levels€ and Fed staff now see gross domestic product €œexpanding slowly€ in 2010 with GDP growth €œflattening out€ in H2 2009. Fed officials said the economy is worse than thet expected and said there is a downside risk to the €œalready weak€ economic outlook including more pressure on U.S. financial institutions. Data released in the U.S. today saw February wholesale inventories decline more than expected, off 1.5% m/m and 1.7% y/y. In eurozone news, German February manufacturing orders fell 3.5% m/m and 38.2% y/y. The European Commission today said it plans to raise the ceiling on its loan facility to non-eurozone countries to ‚¬50 billion from the existing ‚¬25 billion level. European Central Bank member Noyer said the French economy will improve at the beginning of 2010. Also, German factory exports slumped 23.1% y/y. Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.3100 figure.
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