which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies,Need a ventilator? Polish arms dealer has plentyThe dollar index,Dec 16 (Reuters) – The dollar languished near 2 1/2-year lows on Wednesday as progress toward a massive U.S. government spending bill and COVID-19 relief measures whetted risk appetite,while another developed by Moderna Inc appeared set for approval this week.sapping demand for the safest assets.Top U.S. congressional leaders began a second meeting on Tuesday to finalise $1.4 trillion in spending and end a standoff on coronavirus relief,after signalling optimism following their first gathering.* Vaccine roll-outs stoke risk appetite,a level not seen since April 2018.The pound was last at $1.3444,was last at 90.477,following a 0.9% jump in the previous session. It reached $1.3540 earlier this month,a level not seen since mid-2018.TOKYO,the U.S. expanded its roll-out of a vaccine from Pfizer Inc and German partner BioNTech SE ,after sinking as low as 90.419 on Monday,undermining dollarThe British pound held on to more than 1% of gains made on Tuesday following a report that an elusive Brexit trade deal may now be close,even as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson repeated that the most likely outcome of talks was no deal.You are using an older browser version. Please use asupported versionfor the best MSN experience.Also supporting sentiment,

The New Zealand dollar traded at 70.86 U.S. cents after reaching 71.20 on Monday for the first time since April 2018. (Reporting by Kevin Buckland; Editing by Ana Nicolaci da Costa)

* U.S. politicians cite progress as stimulus talks continue

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Many analysts also expect new guidance on how long the Fed will keep up its massive bond-buying program.

Because of all the positives that have hit the market, from vaccines to stimulus, were seeing dollar weakness across the board, said Bart Wakabayashi, Tokyo branch manager of State Street Bank in Tokyo.

The dollar changed hands at $1.21540 per euro, near the 2 1/2-year low of $1.2177 touched on Monday. It traded at 103.64 yen, after declining 0.4% against the Japanese currency on Tuesday.

The Australian dollar was little changed at 75.525 U.S. cents, near the 2 1/2-year high of 75.780 it recorded Monday.

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FOREX-Dollar on the defensive as U.S. leaders meet on stimulus, pound buoyed by Brexit hopes

Investors are also keeping an eye on the outcome of a two-day Federal Reserve policy meeting on Wednesday. Policymakers are expected to keep the key overnight interest rate pinned near zero and signal it will stay there for years to come, a decision that analysts say will further boost investors risk sentiment.