American focus: dollar gains across the board
The dollar rose against most of its major counterparts as Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak stepped down and handed power to the military.
The greenback headed for a third weekly gain versus the euro as Mubarak bowed to the demands of protesters, who are likely to call for immediate elections.
“After the Egyptian announcement, the market quickly realized that there is a lot of uncertainty about who is going to take control, how these elections are going to progress and what the next government is going to look like, so you saw risk aversion quickly return,” said Blake Jespersen, director of foreign exchange in Toronto at Bank of Montreal. “The U.S. dollar is gaining modestly from this.”
Australia’s currency slid below parity with the dollar after Reserve Bank Governor Glenn Stevens said policy makers judged it “sensible” to keep interest rates on hold. The head of Germany’s central bank resigned, while data showed U.S. consumer confidence rose.
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