February 12, 2020 / 2:46 PM / 10 days ago

FOREX-Dollar gains on optimism coronavirus will be contained

    * Stock markets hit record highs as risk sentiment improves
    * Optimism grows that coronavirus will be contained
    * New Zealand dollar jumps as rate cut no longer projected

 (New throughout, updates prices, market activity and comments
to U.S. market open, new byline, changes dateline, previous
LONDON)
    By Karen Brettell
    NEW YORK, Feb 12 (Reuters) - The greenback gained on
Wednesday, but held just below four-month highs reached a day
earlier against the euro, as investors put more money into U.S.
stock markets on greater optimism that the coronavirus will be
contained.
    China reported its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in
nearly two weeks, lending weight to a forecast by its foremost
medical adviser for the outbreak to end by April - but a global
expert warned it was only beginning elsewhere.
    “The market is reasonably confident that China will be able
to get control of the virus, although it may take some time,”
said Steve Englander, head of global G10 FX research at Standard
Chartered in New York. “The fact that it just doesn’t seem to be
as deadly outside of China is something that’s comforting
markets.”
    Wall Street opened at a record high. Investors grew
more comfortable with risk, especially on the view that central
banks are likely to provide more accommodation if the
coronavirus harms the global economy.
    On Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told
Congress the U.S. economy is in a good place, even as he cited
the potential threat from the coronavirus in China and some
long-term concerns.
    The dollar gained 0.21% against the Japanese yen to
110 yen.
    The euro dipped 0.05% against the greenback to $1.0909. It
fell to $1.0889 on Tuesday, the lowest since Oct. 1.
    The greenback has benefited against the euro as economic
data shows a brighter economic outlook for the United States
than for the euro zone.
    "The U.S. economic data is still superior to other
economies' and the growth gap with the rest of the world remains
substantial," said Ugo Lancioni, portfolio manager of the
Neuberger Berman Macro Opportunities FX Fund.    
    The New Zealand dollar jumped to a one-week high
after the central bank removed the chance of a rate cut from its
forward projections.
    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 9:27AM (1427 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar      EUR=        $1.0909        $1.0914     -0.05%         -2.69%      +1.0925     +1.0900
 Dollar/Yen       JPY=        110.0000       109.7700    +0.21%         +1.05%      +110.1300   +109.7800
 Euro/Yen         EURJPY=     120.01         119.84      +0.14%         -1.59%      +120.2900   +119.7700
 Dollar/Swiss     CHF=        0.9756         0.9757      -0.01%         +0.81%      +0.9764     +0.9741
 Sterling/Dollar  GBP=        1.2969         1.2951      +0.14%         -2.19%      +1.2991     +1.2950
 Dollar/Canadian  CAD=        1.3263         1.3286      -0.17%         +2.13%      +1.3295     +1.3258
 Australian/Doll  AUD=        0.6741         0.6713      +0.42%         -3.99%      +0.6749     +0.6713
 ar                                                                                             
 Euro/Swiss       EURCHF=     1.0643         1.0652      -0.08%         -1.93%      +1.0662     +1.0635
 Euro/Sterling    EURGBP=     0.8409         0.8425      -0.19%         -0.53%      +0.8432     +0.8401
 NZ               NZD=        0.6471         0.6401      +1.09%         -3.93%      +0.6487     +0.6402
 Dollar/Dollar                                                                                  
 Dollar/Norway    NOK=        9.2036         9.2480      -0.48%         +4.84%      +9.2496     +9.1989
 Euro/Norway      EURNOK=     10.0404        10.0964     -0.55%         +2.06%      +10.1010    +10.0370
 Dollar/Sweden    SEK=        9.6253         9.6358      -0.19%         +2.97%      +9.6421     +9.6137
 Euro/Sweden      EURSEK=     10.5000        10.5200     -0.19%         +0.29%      +10.5217    +10.4900
 
 (Additional reporting by Saikat Chatterjee in London; Editing
by David Gregorio)
  
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