Euro slips below US$1.24 for first time in more than two years

NEW YORK (AFP) - The euro dipped to a two-year low against the US dollar after the European Central Bank signalled it could soon take more easing measures if economic conditions remain weak.

The euro finished at US$1.2371, falling below US$1.24 for the first time since August 2012.

As widely expected, the ECB kept its key interest rates unchanged at its regular monthly policy meeting. But ECB chief Mario Draghi suggested the bank could move with further stimulus when it next meets in December.

"Should it become necessary to further address risks of too prolonged a period of low inflation, the governing council is unanimous in its commitment to using additional unconventional instruments within its mandate," Draghi said.

Analysts characterized Draghi's tone as "dovish" and said it underscored the contrast between the ECB's direction and the US Federal Reserve, which last month decided to end its quantitative easing program.

"As long as there is a risk of additional easing from the ECB, the euro will remain under pressure," said BK Asset Management managing director Kathy Lien.