By Alex Ho
Investing.com – The Japanese yen gained against the U.S. dollar on Thursday in Asia as the new coronavirus continued to spread in Europe.
The pair lost 0.6% to 103.85 by 11:34 PM ET (03:34 GMT).
Overnight, U.S. President Donald Trump announced a ban on travels to the U.S. from Europe for 30 days in an attempt to stop the virus from spreading further.
The ban would apply to countries in the Schengen economic and travel zone, while UK and Ireland would be exempted. Also, goods are not included in the ban.
The news came as the World Health Organization officially declared the COVID-19 as a pandemic.
“In the past two weeks the number of cases outside China has increased thirteenfold and the number of affected countries has tripled,” WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a press conference on Wednesday. “In the days and weeks ahead, we expect to see the number of cases, the number of deaths and the number of affected countries to climb even higher.”
The that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies dropped 0.1% to 96.360.
Meanwhile, the pair lost 0.4% to 0.6458 even after Australia announced an $11.4 billion stimulus package that includes wage subsidies and cash payments to small businesses.
The pair gained 0.2% to 1.1290 as markets await to see how aggressively the European Central Bank moves when it meets later on Thursday.
The pair was little changed at 1.2817. The Bank of England slashing rates by half a point earlier today.
The U.K government, meanwhile, revealed a 12 billion pound ($15.43 billion) fund to combat the coronavirus.
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