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Dollar, euro rangebound in Asian trade

TOKYO -- The dollar and the euro stayed within a tight range Tuesday key meetings in Europe and Japan, while the Australian dollar slumped on a surprise rate cut.

The dollar stood at 78.09 yen Tuesday afternoon, nearly flat from 77.98 yen in New York Monday afternoon.

The euro was at US$1.2892 and 100.70 yen, little changed from US$1.2887 and 100.51 yen in New York.

The markets were waiting for headlines from Greece and Spain, as well as the results of a Moody's review that could see Spain downgraded to junk status, Kengo Suzuki, forex strategist at Mizuho Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.

After Spain unveiled an austerity budget for 2013, some EU officials expressed their resolve to help the country if it seeks a bailout, as eurozone finance ministers gather for a meeting on Oct. 8.

Rising hopes for a Spanish bailout are also expected to be discussed at a European Union summit on Oct. 18-19.

The Australian dollar dropped to US$1.0314 from US$1.0342 after Australia's central bank on Tuesday cut interest rates by 25 basis points to 3.25 percent, ending a three-month pause.

“The outlook for growth in the world economy has softened over recent months, with estimates for global GDP being edged down, and risks to the outlook still seen to be on the downside,” RBA Governor Glenn Stevens said in a statement.

“Growth in China has also slowed, and uncertainty about near-term prospects is greater than it was some months ago.”

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