Euro surges against dollar on ECB comments

The euro rose against the dollar in Asia on Monday after the European Central Bank chief's positive comments last week about the beleaguered eurozone's outlook, analysts said.

The euro was at $1.3387 in afternoon Asian trade Monday, compared to $1.3341 in the US late Friday. The US dollar was at 89.61 yen from 89.18 yen, and the euro traded at 119.96 yen from 119.00 yen.

Traders piled into the euro after ECB chief Mario Draghi said Thursday there was "a significant improvement in financial market conditions" in the single currency bloc, analysts said.

"Euro leaders are getting far more confident and vocal that the end is in sight for the eurozone crisis... The single currency has taken the bait," IG markets said in a report.

Among a long list of positives, Draghi pointed to lower bond yields, higher stock prices, record-low volatility, strong capital inflows into the eurozone, a halt of deposit flight in peripheral countries and a reduction of the ECB's balance sheet.

The ECB also held its key interest rate steady at its historic low of 0.75 percent.

The yen's continued slide against the dollar and euro followed the Japanese government's announcement of a stimulus package worth hundreds of billions of dollars on Friday.

The greenback was stronger against most Asian currencies, rising to 40.68 Philippine pesos from 40.57 pesos on Friday, to 1,056.79 South Korean won from 1,054.69 won and to 54.64 Indian rupees from 54.50 rupees.

It also advanced to Sg$1.2264 from Sg$1.2231 and to 30.29 Thai baht from 30.28 baht.

However, the US dollar slipped to 9,630 Indonesian rupiah from 9,880 rupiah, and to Tw$28.93 from Tw$28.95.

The Australian dollar was at $1.0554 from $1.0576, while China's yuan strengthened to 14.41 yen from 14.30 yen.

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      EURSGD=X
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