CURRENCY : Dollar Quiet as Traders Await Talks’ Outcome

Associated Press

The dollar barely moved Tuesday in light foreign exchange dealings, which money brokers attributed to upcoming meetings of senior finance ministers that might affect the U.S. currency’s value.

Gold prices rose abroad but retreated in New York, falling toward the $400-an-ounce level in active trading. Republic National Bank quoted bullion at $404.50 an ounce as of 4 p.m. EDT, down from $409.20 late Monday.

Foreign exchange strategists said a meeting of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, to be held Thursday in West Berlin and followed Saturday by talks among top-level finance officials from the leading industrial democracies, were deterring much dollar trading. The currency moved marginally throughout the day.

“We’re into that range for the dollar again,” said Stuart Yannalfo, a senior foreign exchange trader at Refco Inc., a New York-based commodities futures company. “Unfortunately, we need something to rattle it.”


Pound Strengthens

In Tokyo, the dollar edged up 0.35 Japanese yen to 134.15 yen. Later in London, it edged down to 133.90. By the time trading ended in New York the dollar fetched 134.09 yen, up slightly from 133.54 late Monday.

The British pound strengthened mildly against the dollar in London to $1.6865, up from $1.6785 late Monday. In New York sterling fetched $1.6817, more expensive than $1.6787 late Monday.

Other late dollar rates in New York, compared to levels late Monday, included: 1.8669 West German marks, down from 1.8677; 1.5767 Swiss francs, down from 1.5780; 1.2183 Canadian dollars, down from 1.2188; 6.3450 French francs, down from 6.3495, and 1,389.00 Italian lire, down from 1,391.75.


No Great Interest

Trading was much more active in the precious metals market, where gold prices continued to slide in U.S. dealings to the lowest levels since early last year, a reaction to growing investor disillusionment with bullion’s value as a long-term investment and protection against inflation.

On the Commodity Exchange in New York, gold for current delivery fell $3.90 an ounce to $405.30.

Earlier in London, gold rose 70 cents to $410; in Zurich, Switzerland, it rose $2 to $410.50, and in Hong Kong it rose $1.72 to $413.12.


Silver for current delivery tumbled 11.8 cents an ounce on the New York Comex to $6.252. Earlier in London silver rose 12 cents to $6.36.