The euro can't seem to catch a break, starting 2015 with a drop to a nine-year low against the U.S. dollar as the timetable for central bank action appears to step up amid a storm of other negatives for the common currency.
"The market was divided over when the ECB (European Central Bank) would undertake QE (quantitative easing)," David Forrester, a foreign-exchange strategist at Macquarie, said.
But comments from ECB President Mario Draghi changed that, he said, adding expectations are now for a policy adjustment possibly at the year's first meeting on Jan. 22.
In an interview with German newspaper Handelsblatt, Draghi said he believes the risk that the central bank won't be able to fulfill its mandate to preserve price stability had risen compared with six months ago.
"It moves the timetable for QE potentially forward," he said, but he noted that other factors are also weighing. "You also have U.S. dollar strength and the Fed potentially raising rates—that's what's feeding the euro weakness now."
Weakness abounds, with the euro fetching $1.1936, after trading as low as $1.1860, its lowest since 2006.
The ECB likely wants the euro to decline to help spur the economy and inflation, noted Jesper Bargmann, head of trading for Asia at Nordea. But he added, "I'm not sure they would like the euro to collapse in the short term."