Foreign exchange – Euro Unchanged After ECB; Yen Close to Flat Amid China Virus Considerations 

© Reuters.

By Alex Ho – The Euro was unchanged against the U.S. dollar on Friday in Asia after the European Central Bank (ECB) launched a broad review of its policy and held rates steady.

The EUR/USD pair was unchanged at 1.1051 by 1:15 AM ET (05:15 GMT).

In the review, the ECB also signaled that loose monetary policy would continue at least until the end of the year.

“It will be a whole host of things,” ECB President Christine Lagarde told a press conference on Thursday. “It will have to do with how we deliver, how we measure what tools we have and how we communicate.”

Lagarde also said risks to the central bank’s growth outlook remained “tilted to the downside.”

In other news, the World Health Organization said the new coronavirus remains a local crisis for now, stopped short of calling the virus a global health emergency.

“Make no mistake, this is an emergency in China, but it has not yet become a global health emergency,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO’s director-general, said at a briefing in Geneva Thursday. “It may yet become one.”

Yet many investors were anxious as the epidemic spreads within China, killing 25 people in China and infecting more than 800.

China issued restrictions on travel and public gatherings in Wuhan, the city in China where the virus was first detected, earlier this week.

The USD/JPY pair was little changed at 109.51.

The AUD/USD pair and the NZD/USD pair were also near flat.

The U.S. dollar index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies was little changed at 97.520.

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