* Graphic: World FX rates in 2020 tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E (Updates prices, adds comment, changes byline, previous dateline London) By Sinéad Carew NEW YORK, Sept 22 (Reuters) - The dollar was gaining ground on Tuesday as investors sought safety for the second day in a row while they eyed new restrictions aimed at curbing surging coronavirus cases in Europe, the latest U.S.-China tensions and Washington's lack of progress on reaching a fiscal stimulus agreement. Sterling wavered between losses and gains, at one point slipping to two-month lows against the dollar, as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled new restrictions to tackle a second wave of the virus. "Those types of moves give the market pause. As we all know the virus doesn't live in a vacuum and what you see in one country or region will affect other places. Economically it could have an effect," said Minh Trang, senior FX trader at Silicon Valley Bank. "Typically when there's some fear in the market and some unknowns, investors would flow toward the dollar as a temporary safe haven." Trang also noted that the dollar, which has been weak since July, seemed to be hitting a floor with its slide, taking a pause in reaction to news from central banks as well as the virus. In remarks released late Monday ahead of his testimony to a congressional committee on Tuesday, U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the Fed remained committed to using all the tools at its disposal to help the U.S. economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic. A research report from Action Economics on Tuesday also cited issues such as deteriorating relations with China as well as deadlock in Washington over an aid package aimed at bolstering the economy. U.S. President Donald Trump was set to tell the United Nations General Assembly it "must hold China accountable for their actions" related to the coronavirus pandemic, according to excerpts from a speech he was to deliver on Tuesday. The S&P pared its opening gains, though it was still in positive territory by late morning as it bounced back slightly from Monday's sell-off. Also on Monday currency investors shunned risk and pushed the dollar index to its highest point in almost six weeks. The dollar was last up 0.23% at 93.783 versus a basket of currencies. In Spain, the army has been asked to help fight a coronavirus surge in Madrid, while restrictions in other European countries were announced last week, with Germany describing the situation as "worrying." You-Na Park-Heger, FX analyst at Commerzbank said that even though Commerzbank does not expect more extensive lockdowns, the possibility may weigh on market sentiment for some time. "A rapid correction of yesterday's move is therefore unlikely to be seen any time soon," she said. The Australian dollar, after earlier falling to its lowest point against the greenback in almost a month, was last down 0.21% at 0.7208 per dollar after the Reserve Bank of Australia said it is assessing policy options including currency market intervention and negative rates. The euro was down 0.31% against the dollar at $1.1733 , while the dollar was gaining on the yen for the second day in a row, up 0.11% at 104.760. Sterling was down 0.36% at $1.2768, though above its session low of $1.2711. ======================================================== Currency bid prices at 10:21AM (1421 GMT) Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid Previous Change Session Euro/Dollar EUR= $1.1733 $1.1769 -0.31% +4.67% +1.1773 +1.1721 Dollar/Yen JPY= 104.7600 104.6400 +0.11% -3.77% +104.8400 +104.4100 Euro/Yen EURJPY= 122.92 123.17 -0.20% +0.80% +123.2700 +122.6600 Dollar/Swiss CHF= 0.9173 0.9143 +0.33% -5.22% +0.9175 +0.9138 Sterling/Dollar GBP= 1.2768 1.2814 -0.36% -3.70% +1.2866 +1.2715 Dollar/Canadian CAD= 1.3293 1.3306 -0.10% +2.36% +1.3345 +1.3283 Australian/Doll AUD= 0.7208 0.7223 -0.21% +2.66% +0.7235 +0.7179 ar Euro/Swiss EURCHF= 1.0763 1.0762 +0.01% -0.82% +1.0771 +1.0746 Euro/Sterling EURGBP= 0.9188 0.9183 +0.05% +8.68% +0.9220 +0.9145 NZ NZD= 0.6658 0.6666 -0.12% -1.16% +0.6687 +0.6640 Dollar/Dollar Dollar/Norway NOK= 9.3050 9.2791 +0.28% +6.00% +9.3677 +9.2725 Euro/Norway EURNOK= 10.9170 10.9300 -0.12% +10.97% +10.9880 +10.9135 Dollar/Sweden SEK= 8.8754 8.8414 +0.00% -5.05% +8.8963 +8.8403 Euro/Sweden EURSEK= 10.4133 10.4134 +0.00% -0.52% +10.4290 +10.3845 (Additional reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York and Elizabeth Howcroft in London, editing by Larry King, Catherine Evans and Jonathan Oatis)
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