The euro wobbled Monday morning in New York amid conflicting reports about whether Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi would resign under pressure from the bond markets.
Early reports suggested that the embattled Italian leader was negotiating the terms of his resignation, but a Facebook post on his official page said he has no plans to step down.
Italian borrowing costs have soared of late, with the bond markets expressing doubts that Berlusconi’s government will make structural reforms.
Meanwhile in Greece, Prime Minister George Papandreou will reportedly step down as the nation’s top parties form a new government.
Still, the euro held its ground versus the dollar, staying near $1.3750 for a fifth day. There was little movement versus the yen, with the euro holding near Y107.20.
Modest early losses took the euro to a weekly low of GBP 0.8558 versus the sterling.
Eurozone retail sales decreased in September, as consumer spending remained subdued, raising fears of a possible recession in the currency bloc.
Retail sales were down 0.7 percent on a monthly basis in September, reversing the 0.1 percent rise in August, data released by statistical office Eurostat showed Monday. Economists were expecting sales to be flat month-on-month.
German industrial output dipped 2.7 percent month-on-month in September, the sharpest drop since the beginning of 2009, according to data from the Federal Ministry of Economy and Technology, published Monday. The decline was bigger than the 0.9 percent drop forecast by economists and 0.4 percent drop seen in August.
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