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Crown expected to outpeform other Central European currencies - Reuters poll
June 1, 2017 / 2:00 PM / 6 months ago

Crown expected to outpeform other Central European currencies - Reuters poll

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Gains by most central European currencies in May only the Czech crown with room to rise in the next 12 months, and the Romanian leu may recover, a monthly Reuters survey of 35 analysts showed on Thursday.

FILE PHOTO: Czech Crown coins and notes are seen in this picture illustration taken April 1, 2017. REUTERS/David W Cerny/Illustration/File Photo

The crown should strengthen to 25.75 per euro, up 2.4 percent from Wednesday’s close, according to the median forecast in the May 28-June 1 poll. Last month’s poll predicted it would reach 25.8 to the euro.

The zloty is expected to weaken by 0.4 percent to 4.2 to the euro, the dinar by 1.1 percent to 124.4 per euro and the forint should be little changed at 307.33.

All the forecasts except for the dinar’s are for bigger gains than last month’s forecasts.

Analysts expect the leu to gain to 4.51 to the euro, weaker than the 4.48 predicted a month ago. Romania’s economy grew 5.7 percent in the first quarter, but wage increases and tax cuts may boost Romania’s budget deficit and inflation by 2018.

The crown and zloty are trading near multi-year highs and the forint near seven-month highs after recent figures showed output surging and inflation retreating.

The crown closed at 26.363 per euro on Wednesday, remaining above the cap on its value of 27 to the euro the central bank lifted two months ago.

The poll forecasts that the crown will trade at 26.2 to 27 per euro until the end of September. Investors hold tens of billions of euros worth of crowns bought before the cap was removed, speculating its value would surge.

“The koruna (crown) is still overbought and the potential gains should be limited as well,” said CSOB analyst Jan Bures.

He and Radomir Jac of Generali Investments agreed the Czech central bank probably would not raise interest rates before 2018. The bank has said the less the crown rises above the former cap, the more likely it is to raise rates.

“I think that the CNB is actually satisfied with the CZK firming seen so far and also with the fact that there is no significant volatility of the exchange rate,” Jac said.

Editing by Larry King

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