Dollar under pressure ahead of US jobs data
The dollar eased against the yen in Asia on Friday as investors turn their attention to the release later in the day of a key U.S. jobs report that could give an idea of the Federal Reserve's plans for raising interest rates.
The greenback edged down to 119.62 yen in Tokyo from 119.77 yen in New York late Thursday.
The euro was quoted at US$1.0879, unchanged from U.S. trade, while falling to 130.16 yen from 130.30 yen.
Traders were sitting tight before the Labor Department's nonfarm payrolls data, after figures this week showed disappointing private-sector jobs creation in March and easing manufacturing activity.
The dollar, which has been rallying this year on speculation about the first rate hike since 2006, has lost some steam over the past few weeks as talk of an early summer move retreated.
Friday's report is expected to say the U.S. economy added 245,000 non- farm jobs last month, down from February's extra 295,000, according to a Bloomberg survey.
"Investors are all the more cautious because up to now the recovery in the labor market has been going in a straight line," said Kazuo Shirai, a Los Angelesbased trader at MUFG Union Bank NA.
"If payrolls come out below 200,000, a June move by the Federal Reserve will become unlikely and a shift back to expectations for a September hike will push down the dollar," he told Bloomberg News.
The dollar was mixed against other Asia-Pacific currencies.
It sank to SG$ 1.3577 from SG$ 1.3623 on Thursday, to 1,093.88 South Korean won from 1,096.88 won, to NT$31.06 from NT$31.20, and to 44.45 Philippine pesos from 44.63 pesos.
The dollar rose to 13,024 Indonesian rupiah from 12,990 rupiah, and to 32.47 Thai baht from 32.45 baht, while staying unchanged at 62.50 Indian rupees.
The Australian dollar fetched 75.96 U.S. cents against 75.95 cents, while the Chinese yuan bought 19.31 yen compared with 19.30 yen.