The international appetite for euro-zone financial assets that underpinned the local currency the past two years is beginning to erode.
While broad data showing real-time flows into and out of the region’s stocks and bonds are hard to find, strategists point to items such as U.S. exchange-traded funds, which pulled $1.1 billion from European assets this month, the first outflow since April 2013. Bonds of Italy and Spain that yielded as much as 7.05 percentage points more than Treasuries two years ago now pay less than their U.S. counterparts, diminishing their appeal.
The result is the euro’s biggest monthly loss since February 2013, and Morgan Stanley said this week selling the 18-nation currency remains the surest bet in the developed world. Rather than a cause for concern, the European Central Bank may see weakness in the euro as a welcome development as it tries to avoid deflation and spur exports to boost the economy.