Hollande Calls For Further ECB Intervention

   on February 06 2013 9:16 AM
hollande
France's President Francois Hollande attends a forum in Paris in October 2012. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

The euro traded steadily near $1.35 after its rally was quashed early on Tuesday after political scandals in some of the region's weaker economies unfolded. On Wednesday the currency held steady, trading at 1.3536.

Political uncertainty in Spain and Italy shook investors' confidence and renewed old worries that the two struggling nations would derail the region's recovery efforts.

Opponents of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy called for his resignation after he was accused of being a part of a political corruption scandal. Although Rajoy denied the accusations, many worried that an election at this point in Spain's recovery would have dire consequences.

In Italy, former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi showed promise in the polls leading up to the country's election at the end of the month.

Berlusconi, who is wracked with scandalous accusations and was forced to resign amid soaring interest rates in 2011, has investors worried about his ability to contribute to the eurozone recovery if he is elected.

French President Francois Hollande spoke up on Tuesday about his view on the region's foreign exchange policy. The European Central Bank has kept its distance from the issue, claiming it was not mandated to carry out such policies, but Hollande urged the ECB to consider stepping in to help the eurozone compete in the global economy.

With most major governments like the US and Japan are actively attempting to lower the value of their currency in order for their exports to remain competitive, the euro's recent strength has made it difficult for struggling countries like Spain, France and Italy to ramp up their exports.

However, according to the Wall Street Journal, Hollande's plea is likely to fall on deaf ears. The ECB made no comment in response to his public statement, and the currency showed little change following his remarks.

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