FOREX-Yen, Swiss franc fall on hopes of global stimulus measures

       * China unveils interest rate reform, boosts risk appetite
    * Focus on Fed's Jackson Hole symposium
    * Markets expect monetary leaders to announce key measures
    * Graphic: World FX rates in 2019 http://tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh

 (Updates prices, adds comment)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, Aug 19 (Reuters) - The safe-haven yen and Swiss franc retreated against the dollar on
Monday, as risk sentiment improved after a week of turmoil on hopes major central banks would launch fresh
stimulus measures to lift their sluggish economies.
    The Japanese currency fell for a third straight session versus the greenback, while the Swiss unit
slid to a two-week low against the dollar.
    Optimism about government action to calm U.S. recession concerns, triggered by last week's inversion
of the bond yield curve, grew ahead of the Federal Reserve's symposium later in the week in Jackson Hole,
Wyoming, where analysts said central bankers could announce new measures.
    China also unveiled interest rate reforms expected to lower corporate borrowing costs, which helped
lift the market's mood, while the prospect of Germany's coalition government ditching its balanced budget
rule to take on new debt and launch stimulus steps also boosted risk appetite.
    "We think the more accommodative central bank backdrop should help insulate the downside in risk
markets," said Mazen Issa, senior FX strategist at TD Securities in New York.
    In afternoon trading, the dollar rose 0.3% against the yen to 106.66 yen, helping push the
dollar index 0.2% higher on the day to 98.358.
    Scotiabank, in a research note, said the dollar/yen pair is showing signs of stabilizing from a
technical viewpoint, but the longer-run indicators remain bearishly aligned for the greenback.
    "We would prefer to see additional dollar gains through the close of this week to confirm last week's
reversal and think a daily close above 106.80 yen... would support the outlook for dollar strength," the
bank said.
    The euro, meanwhile, fell 0.1% versus the greenback at $1.1079, after falling 1% last week, its
biggest weekly drop since early July.
    Against the Swiss franc, the dollar climbed 0.3% to 0.9816 franc. Sight deposits at the Swiss
National Bank posted another big weekly rise, indicating more intervention from policymakers.

    FED EYED
    Investor optimism is likely to be capped before a speech by Fed Chairman Jerome Powell later this week
at the Jackson Hole conference.
    Strategists believe his comments will be aimed at reassuring nervous markets that the Fed will remain
in an easing stance and set the stage for more rate cuts after a quarter-percentage-point rate cut in
July.
    "The Jackson Hole summit would be the perfect venue for the Fed to set or reset market expectations,"
said Kathy Lien, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management.
    "If they're committed to lowering interest rates in September, we should hear central bankers downplay
the improvement in spending and retail sales."
    Money markets are pricing in a cumulative 67 basis points of rate cuts from the Fed by the end of the
year.

    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 3:53PM (1953 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change
                                              Session
 Euro/Dollar      EUR=        $1.1077        $1.1089     -0.11%         -3.42%      +1.1113     +1.1077
 Dollar/Yen       JPY=        106.6500       106.3600    +0.27%         -3.27%      +106.6900   +106.2500
 Euro/Yen         EURJPY=     118.14         117.96      +0.15%         -6.40%      +118.4700   +117.8700
 Dollar/Swiss     CHF=        0.9815         0.9782      +0.34%         +0.01%      +0.9820     +0.9774
 Sterling/Dollar  GBP=        1.2131         1.2149      -0.15%         -4.90%      +1.2172     +1.2105
 Dollar/Canadian  CAD=        1.3327         1.3270      +0.43%         -2.27%      +1.3332     +1.3252
 Australian/Doll  AUD=        0.6762         0.6780      -0.27%         -4.07%      +0.6799     +0.6763
 ar
 Euro/Swiss       EURCHF=     1.0874         1.0848      +0.24%         -3.38%      +1.0898     +1.0850
 Euro/Sterling    EURGBP=     0.9128         0.9129      -0.01%         +1.60%      +0.9169     +0.9113
 NZ               NZD=        0.6402         0.6427      -0.39%         -4.69%      +0.6443     +0.6404
 Dollar/Dollar
 Dollar/Norway    NOK=        8.9786         9.0110      -0.36%         +3.93%      +9.0163     +8.9606
 Euro/Norway      EURNOK=     9.9468         9.9933      -0.47%         +0.41%      +10.0007    +9.9440
 Dollar/Sweden    SEK=        9.6853         9.6560      +0.17%         +8.05%      +9.6868     +9.6466
 Euro/Sweden      EURSEK=     10.7303        10.7124     +0.17%         +4.55%      +10.7464    +10.7089


 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; Editing by Jonathan Oatis, Chizu Nomiyama and Dan Grebler)

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