NEW YORK (Reuters) - The dollar retreated from a 14-year high on Wednesday, while the Swedish crown booked its biggest gains in about 10 months versus the euro after Sweden’s central bank voted by a thin margin to extend its bond purchase program.
Some traders reduced their dollar holdings on profit-taking in light volume ahead of a big batch of U.S. economic data due on Thursday and the Christmas holiday, analysts said.
“There are no big fundamental underpinnings to the move. It’s more a technical adjustments ahead of the holidays,” said Paresh Upadhyaya, director of currency strategy at Pioneer Investments in Boston.
The greenback has generated its 4.5 percent gain for the year since the Nov. 8 U.S. election, as traders have bet that President-elect Donald Trump and a Republican-controlled Congress will embark on steep tax cuts and fiscal spending to stimulate the economy.
The dollar index .DXY which measures the greenback against six major currencies, slipped 0.27 percent to 103.01. It reached 103.65 on Tuesday, which was its highest since December 2002.
Its decline was limited by the Federal Reserve’s signal last week that it might increase interest rates at a swifter pace than previously thought.
The euro was up 0.4 percent at $1.0423 EUR=, rebounding from $1.0352 on Tuesday, the lowest since January 2003.
Traders are casting a wary eye on Italy’s troubled bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena (BMPS.MI), which needs to raise 5 billion euros by the end of the year to avoid being wound down by the European Central Bank.
The greenback shed 0.3 percent to 117.52 yen JPY=.
Analysts cautioned the dollar is vulnerable if details on Trump’s policies fall short of market expectations.
Sweden’s central bank, the Riksbank, kept interest rates on hold at -0.50 percent and extended its quantitative easing (QE), or bond purchase, program after a split board forced Governor Stefan Ingves to use his casting vote for the first time since 2008.
Dissenters on the board held the view, shared by many analysts, that the ultra-loose monetary policy is out of sync with an economy expected to grow more than 3 percent this year and 2 percent in 2017.
“It’s been an experiment for countries,” Minh Trang, senior currency trader at Silicon Valley Bank in Santa Clara, California said of QE and negative interest rates. “They have delivered lackluster results at best.”
The euro was down almost 1 percent against the crown at 9.6112 crowns EURSEK=, on track for its biggest one-day drop since February, Reuters data showed.
The dollar was 1.4 percent weaker on the day at 9.2168 crowns SEK=, on course for its biggest one-day fall since June.
Currency bid prices at 2:55PM (1955 GMT)
Description Last U.S. Close Pct Change
Euro/Dollar $1.0424 $1.0385 +0.38%
Dollar/Yen 117.5100 117.8400 -0.28%
Euro/Yen 122.58 122.38 +0.16%
Dollar/Swiss 1.0262 1.0294 -0.20%
Sterling/Dollar 1.2343 1.2365 -0.18%
Dollar/Canadian 1.3400 1.3367 +0.25%
Australian/Doll 0.7246 0.7259 -0.18%
Euro/Swiss 1.0698 1.0683 +0.14%
Euro/Sterling 0.8444 0.8406 +0.45%
NZ 0.6903 0.6914 -0.16%
Dollar/Norway 8.6722 8.7035 -0.36%
Euro/Norway 9.0436 9.0415 +0.02%
Dollar/Sweden 9.2178 9.3480 -1.02%
Euro/Sweden 9.6111 9.7099 -1.02%
Additinal reporting by Jamie McGeever in London; Editing by Robin Pomeroy and W Simon