US dollar rises in Asia after release of mixed statistics about economy

January 7, 2014

Tokyo (Jan 8)   The dollar rose in Asia Tuesday following a mixed set of U.S. economic data, as investors await key jobs figures later in the week and ahead of the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting.

The greenback fetched 104.46 yen in afternoon Tokyo trade, up from 104.19 yen but still off the five-year high of 105.41 yen touched last week.

The euro bought US$1.3621 against US$1.3629, while it gained to 142.29 yen from 142.02 yen.

On Monday, data showed growth in the U.S. service sector slowed last month, although that was offset by figures pointing to November new factory orders hitting their highest level in more than 20 years. 

Eyes are on the release Wednesday of minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve's most recent policy meeting, with analysts looking for clues about whether policymakers will further cut its stimulus program this month.

The Fed last month said it would reduce its bond-buying scheme by US$10 billion to US$75 billion a month in January, citing a healthy recovery in the world's number one economy.

A strong set of jobs figures on Friday could push the bank to announce a further reduction in the stimulus, in turn pushing the dollar higher.

Eurozone inflation data due for release later Tuesday will be a key trading peg for the euro, dealers said, as the European Central Bank prepares for a policy meeting this week.

Weak inflation figures have stoked speculation of further easing moves by the ECB to counter any slowdown in the 17-nation bloc.

The greenback was mostly higher against other Asia-Pacific currencies Tuesday.

It rose to 1,068.92 South Korean won from 1,065.30 on Monday, to 12,260 Indonesian rupiah from 12,235 and to 62.35 Indian rupees from 62.30 rupees.

It also edged up to 33.12 Thai baht from 33.11 baht.

The greenback weakened to SG$1.2695 from SG$1.2697 while it was unchanged at 44.73 Philippine pesos.

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