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Euro weakens ahead of ECB

News Date: 10/3/2016 01:24:52
Euro gave up ground on Thursday as traders await the European Central Bank's periodic meeting today, which is widely expected to cut deposit rates further into negative levels and to expand its monthly purchases of government bonds in order to stimulate flagging growth and negative inflation rates in the Eurozone.

Euro slipped 0.20% against the dollar to trade at 1.0979, while Britain's sterling climbed 0.30% versus the common currency to hover around 0.7731. Japan's yen gained 0.15% on the euro to move around 124.90, near multi-week highs.

The New Zealand's central bank cut its benchmark interest rates unexpectedly to a record low of 2.25% to bolster growth and inflation rates, which sent Kiwi plunging by over one percent against its American rival to a one-week low, while last trading at 0.6642, down 0.17% on the day.

Oil prices surged five percent to multi-month highs yesterday despite an increase in the U.S. crude inventories to a new record high, as traders hope that major producers around the world would confirm a deal to freeze production volumes at the January's levels, which would help stop the supply glut in global markets.

Brent crude futures lost 24 cents today on profit-taking, or 0.61% to trade at $40.82 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gave up 15 cents, or 0.40% to move back to $38.14 a barrel.

Investors wait for a basket of data today, with U.S. unemployment claims expected to have fallen to 272 thousand last week from the previous reading'a 278 thousand, which is good news for the greenback and the economy.

Natural gas Storage in the U.S. is forecast to have fallen by 198.3 billion cubic feet last week, compared to the previous reading's 55.2B increase, which is an indication of strong energy demand in the world's biggest energy consumer.

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