The euro proved to be the main loser in today's Fed chairman Alan Greenspan testimony trade with particular stop-loss related selling in euro-yen making matters worse. The US dollar was supported right from the NY start on a stronger than expected January retail sales report.
The data saw immediate interbank and IMM/spec selling from around the $0.9250 area which also escalated after the Fed chairman painted a less gloomy spin on US growth prospects at his mid-morning appearance before the Senate Banking Committee. He downplayed the risks of a recession, thereby reducing the perceived need for more aggressive rate cuts near-term. The euro's sell-off was further aggravated by thin NY liquidity seen in euro-yen which sank swiftly from 108 to a low of 107.
Stop related spec selling soon overwhelmed a European bank reportedly protecting the 107.90 level. USD-yen came unglued with losses into 116.50 after the o/n rumored bid (Kampo) at Y117 proved of fleeting support with IMM/interbank longs bailing in the process. Only a sharp reversal in US stocks (on less aggressive Fed easing prospects) helped the EUR limp back across $0.92.