Sunday, July 10, 2011

Europe's vulnerable underbelly...

...another continuing series...

SYDNEY, July 11 (Reuters) - The euro fell to fresh two-week lows versus the Swiss franc and U.S. dollar in Asia on Monday in the lead-up to an emergency meeting among European leaders worried that the debt crisis was spreading to Italy, the region's third largest economy.

Italian bond yields soared to euro lifetime highs on Friday, raising fears that Italy, with the highest sovereign debt ratio relative to its economy in the euro zone after Greece, could be next to suffer in the crisis.

The Financial Times reported some EU leaders were considering allowing a selective default by Athens to put its debt on a more sustainable footing.

The euro last traded at $1.4213 compared with $1.4245 late in New York on Friday, having dipped to an early low around $1.4200. Traders noted buying interest near $1.4180, which should help keep intact the $1.4190-1.4210 support area for now.

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