Czech inflation keeps crown steady, forint retreats
PRAGUE, April 13 (Reuters) - Central Europe's currencies retreated on Tuesday, with markets taking a breather after recent gains, although the Czech crown held steady and again tested the psychologicial level of 26 per euro after an inflation pick-up.
With markets pausing and turning attention to U.S. inflation data for some clues on the dollar's direction, the Hungarian forint retreated from a two-month high, falling 0.4%. Poland's zloty EURCZK= dropped 0.65%, also from a multi-week high.
Elsewhere, stock markets mostly gained with Czech utility CEZ CEZP.PR hitting its highest since mid-2015 following a rally in Polish utilities on Monday. PGE.WA
Markets are betting the Czech central bank will be the first in central Europe to undo some of the massive loosening undertaken a year ago when the COVID-19 pandemic first struck. Markets price in a first rate hike in six months.
Analysts said inflation data from March, showing a pick-up to a headline rate of 2.3% backed chances of a hike in the second half of the year.
The crown EURCZK= was flat at 26.032 to the euro by 0910 GMT. It has broken the 26 level twice this year.
In Hungary, the forint EURHUF= dropped to 358.52, which a trader called a "healthy correction" after steady gains in the past weeks moving it away from near historic lows seen in March.
Currencies in central Europe - one of the worst-hit regions in the world by the pandemic in the past few months - are struggling to return to the firming path that analysts forecast them to take as economies start to recover.
The pandemic is still weighing on the region and U.S. dollar strength has also sapped some appetite for riskier assets.
On stock markets on Tuesday, Prague .PX and Budapest .BUX tracked a rise of global stocks.
CEZ hit 600 crowns a share for the first time since July 2015, boosted by higher wholesale power prices, expectations of an extraordinary dividend and tracking a jump in Polish peers.
Polish utilities soared on Monday on a report of an upcoming curve-out of their coal assets.
Latest Previou Daily
change in 2021 EURCZK Czech
<EURCZK 26.0320 26.0310 -0.00% +0.76% =
EURHUF Hungary <EURHUF 358.520 357.135 -0.39% +1.17% =
<EURPLN 4.5650 4.5354 -0.65% -0.13% =
EURRON Romanian <EURRON 4.9215 4.9207 -0.02% -1.15% =
EURHRK Croatian <EURHRK 7.5649 7.5665 +0.02% -0.23% =
EURRSD Serbian <EURRSD 117.450 117.550 +0.09% +0.10% =
Latest Previou Daily
change in 2021 .PX
1107.43 1096.47 +1.00% +7.82%
43478.3 43267.2 +0.49% +3.26%
<.WIG20 1981.37 1982.58 -0.06% -0.13%
.BETI Buchares .BETI 11209.5 11224.0 -0.13% +14.32
% .SBITO Ljubljan <.SBITO 1024.82 1018.90 +0.58% +13.76 P
% .CRBEX Zagreb
<.CRBEX 1882.76 1882.17 +0.03% +8.25%
.BELEX Belgrade <.BELEX 758.97 756.13 +0.38% +1.38% 15
<.SOFIX 507.30 507.86 -0.11% +13.36
change vs Bund change
2-year <CZ2YT= 0.6740 -0.0070 +138bp
5-year <CZ5YT= 1.4470 -0.0670 +207bp
<CZ10YT 1.8910 -0.0420 +217bp
2-year <PL2YT= 0.0910 -0.0200 +080bp
5-year <PL5YT= 0.8190 -0.0390 +144bp
<PL10YT 1.5250 -0.0250 +181bp
Note: FRA quotes
are for ask
Reporting by Jason Hovet in Prague and Anita Komuves in Budapest; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri
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