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Dollar sinks below ¥99.30 level

JIJI

The dollar was weaker below ¥99.30 in post-holiday Tokyo trading Tuesday, pressured in part by sales stemming from stock price falls.

At 5 p.m., the dollar was at ¥99.24-25, down from ¥99.65-67 at the same time Friday. The euro stood at $1.3349-3351, up from $1.3292-3293, and at ¥132.49-50, unchanged from late Friday.

The Tokyo market was closed Monday for a national holiday.

In New York on Monday, the dollar temporarily slipped below ¥99 after President Barack Obama was told by former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers that he was removing his name for consideration to succeed Ben Bernanke as chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The dollar also met with selling because of weaker than expected U.S. economic data.

In Tokyo on Tuesday morning, the greenback regained some steam following the Reserve Bank of Australia’s announcement of the minutes of its monetary policy meeting in early September, traders said.

The minutes left open the possibility of the Australian central bank conducting an additional interest rate cut, unleashing sales of the Australian dollar for the U.S. currency, which in turn helped the greenback show resilience vis-a-vis the yen, they said.

But active dollar buying was held in check as Tokyo stocks wiped out their early gains and turned weaker in the afternoon.

Summers’ withdrawal has left Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen as the front-runner for the top post of the U.S. central bank.

The currency market “has now almost fully digested” the news, said an official of a foreign exchange margin trading service firm.