Dollar hits 5-month high against the euro

A looming slowdown in Chinese bank lending and uncertainty over the debt problems of some European countries, particularly Greece, pushed the dollar to a 5-month high against the euro.

The 16-nation euro slid to $1.4108 in late trading in New York from $1.4292 late Tuesday. It traded as low as $1.4081, its lowest point since last August. As recently as early December, the euro was trading above $1.50.

Europe is gripped by concerns over debt levels for some of the weaker members in the European Union, particularly Greece and Ireland, fueling speculation that they will face tough fiscal measures that would limit growth in coming years.

Meanwhile, a Chinese banking regulator said that the country will slow bank lending in order to stop bubbles from forming in the hot real estate market and in other assets.

From news services