After relatively large moves in the foreign exchange market since nearly the start of the year, participants were particularly vulnerable to commentary that encouraged a reversal of trend. Japan's Amari got the ball rolling, suggesting that the yen's decline has been sufficient and that excessive strength had been corrected. This encouraged a bout of short-covering and took some shine off the other major currencies as cross positions were unwound.
Then Juncker's comments hit in the North American afternoon yesterday, claiming that the euro's exchange rate was dangerously high. Again the market's reaction was more about positioning than about the policy signal. Part of the demand, after all, for the euro has been coming from some of the largest asset managers returning to the Spanish and Italian bond markets, believing that the Open Market Transaction scheme is indeed a viable backstop.