Dollar and sterling come under attack
Tuesday 21 February 1995
The markets will test whether they can goad the US Federal Reserve and other central banks into co-ordinated intervention to prop up the dollar.
So far only the Bank of Japan has stepped in to buy the US currency, which fell from Y97.50 to Y97.15 - not far above its all-time low of Y96.60.
The last attempt at co-ordinated intervention took place last June, and the Federal Reserve tried again to support the dollar in November when it fell below DM1.50 and Y97
The results from the local election in Hesse, which marked a success for the German government's coalition partner, was yesterday's excuse in the foreign exchange markets for favouring the German currency. It rose 1.5 pfennigs to DM1.4733 against the dollar.
The British Government's various political troubles, including news of the death of Conservative MP Sir Nicholas Fairbairn, have put the pound firmly out of favour. It fell on opening from its previous close of DM2.3466 to trade just above DM2.33 throughout the day.
Political uncertainty was also the explanation for weakness of the French franc, while the Italian lira is vulnerable because of Italy's unstable politics and unstable government finances.
Hamish McRae, page 26
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