Dollar Slightly Higher Due To Greek Uncertainty

Washington (Feb 11)  The dollar is posting modest gains against all of its major competitors Wednesday. With a decided lack of economic data to drive trading, investors are exercising caution due to the uncertainty regarding the future of  Greece  . Eurozone finance ministers are holding an emergency meeting in  Brussels  to discuss their stance on  Greece  today.  Greece  wants a new austerity-free economic deal with its EU creditors to stave off a funding crunch when the current bailout program ends on  February 28  .

The negotiations are expected to be difficult. All signs point to both  Greece  and  Germany  hardening their conflicting positions on the subject. Investors do not appear to be expecting a resolution to the Greek debt problem at today's meeting.

German Finance Minister  Wolfgang Schaeuble  discarded rumors of a Greek debt deal on Tuesday, saying the existing programme would be reviewed by the  Eurogroup  finance ministers at the meeting.

Bundesbank President  Jens Weidmann  also took a tough stance on  Greece  , saying "The question of a bridge loan via T-bills has as a precondition, in my view, that it's not a bridge to nowhere."

Meanwhile, Greek Defense Minister  Panos Kammenos  warned that the country would try to get funding from other sources outside the EU, including  Russia  or  China  , if it fails to strike a new debt deal.

The finance ministers are scheduled to meet again on Monday, while the  European Central Bank  is expected to meet on  February 18  to discuss the Greek banks.

The dollar rose to a high of  USD1.1279  against the Euro Wednesday, but has since eased back to around  USD1.1300  .

 France's  current account turned to a deficit in December from a surplus in the previous month, as the visible trade shortfall widened on the back of higher volume of oil imports, data from the  Bank of France  showed Wednesday.

The current account showed a deficit of  EUR 1.9 billion  versus a surplus of  EUR 0.3 billion  in November. The goods trade surplus widened to  EUR 1.9 billion  from  EUR 1 billion  , while the surplus in the services trade fell to  EUR 0.1 billion  from  EUR 1.4 billion  .

The buck has also climbed to around  USD1.5235  against the pound sterling, from a 3-day low of  USD1.5299  .

 The National Institute of Economic and Social Research  said on Tuesday that the  U.K  economy advanced at an accelerated rate in the November to January period. The think tank estimates that the GDP grew 0.7% in the three months ended January after the 0.5% increase in the three months ended December.

The greenback hovered around the  Y118  level against the Japanese Yen for the bulk of Wednesday's session, but has since climbed to around  Y120.285.

Source: AllianceNews