FOREX-Euro near 2-month low as Greece deal up in the air

Tue Nov 13, 2012 5:53am IST

* Euro zone, IMF fail to agree on a deal on Greece

* Greece to roll over T-bills on Tues to avoid defaut

* Another euro zone meeting planned on Nov 20

* Dollar index rises above Ichimoku cloud top

By Hideyuki Sano

TOKYO, Nov 13 (Reuters) - The euro hovered near two-month low against the dollar on Tuesday after the euro zone and the International Monetary Fund failed to agree on a long-term plan to reduce Greece's debt, preventing disbursement of an immediate aid to Athens.

With the aid funds from international lenders still blocked, Greece will roll over T-bills on Tuesday to avoid default, though some market players are worried the auction may not go smoothly. Until the blocked funds are released, markets will remain nervous about Greece's long-term debt. ID:nL5E8MC6ZF]

"Although the market was indeed not expecting progress this time, there remain concerns about Greece's funding, putting pressure on the euro," Masafumi Yamamoto, chief FX strategist at Barclays in Tokyo, wrote in a note to clients.

The euro stood at $1.2705, so far flat in early Asian trade but just a stone's throw from its two-month low of $1.2690 hit on Friday.

Against the yen, the common currency stood at 101.05 yen , a tad above one-month low of 100.43 yen hit on Friday.

Euro zone finance ministers agreed to grant Athens two more years to make the cuts demanded of it but IMF and the euro zone are at loggerheads over a longer-term target date to shrink the country's debt pile and who should shoulder the cost.

Juncker said a further Eurogroup meeting would take place on Nov. 20.

On top of concerns about the euro zone, worries of a recession in the U.S. if policymakers in Washington fail to repeal the fiscal cliff of automatic spending cuts and higher tax rates due to kick in early next year undermined risk sentiment, helping the dollar.

The dollar index, a measure of the dollar against a basket of six major currencies, rose to 81.10, its highest level since early September.

On the daily Ichimoku chart, the index rose above the top of the cloud, which stood at 81.054, in a major bull signal for the index.

The dollar fetched 79.59 yen, up slightly in early Asian trade and off three-week low of 79.07 yen.

The Aussie traded little changed at $1.0425, but not far from 1 1/2-month high of $1.0480 hit last week, thanks to recent uptick in Chinese data.

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