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    MORNING BELL: Dollar index trims gains after U.S. home sales data

    Greece will present its economic reform plans to the euro zone on Tuesday, a government official said, missing a Monday deadline which was a condition for extending the country's financial lifeline. The official gave no reason for the delay but said euro zone finance ministers would consider Greece's plans, which include a crackdown on tax evasion and corruption. In Brussels a euro zone official said the "content of the letter will not be a surprise" and therefore the Tuesday submission was not a major issue. Greece has said it was working closely with its euro zone partners in drawing up the list.

    Crude oil prices nudged higher in Asia on Tuesday with U.S. supply data ahead and a market eyeing events in Greece for signs of any further currency turmoil. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil for delivery in April rose 0.11% to $49.37 a barrel. Overnight, crude oil futures extended sharp losses from last week on Monday, as a broadly stronger dollar and lingering concerns over a glut in global supplies drove down prices. Dollar-denominated oil futures contracts tend to fall when the dollar rises, as this makes oil more expensive for buyers in other currencies.

    The dollar trimmed gains against the other major currencies on Monday, after the release of disappointing U.S. home sales data, although concerns over whether Greece will announce the necessary reforms for its bailout extension continued to support safe-haven demand. In a report, the National Association of Realtors said that existing home sales decreased 4.9% to 4.82 million units last month from 5.07 million in December. Analysts had expected existing home sales to fall 0.8% to 4.97 million units in January.

    EUR/USD was down 0.41% to 1.1336 from 1.1383 late Friday. The single currency came under renewed selling pressure as concerns over the conditions attached to the bailout extension kept investors cautious. Athens was to submit a list of reforms to be approved by the country’s creditors in order to secure the extension later Monday.




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