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Greenback rises on U.S. indicators

JIJI

The dollar was firmer above ¥104.70 in Tokyo trading Thursday, supported by a string of brisk U.S. economic indicators announced overnight.

At 5 p.m., the dollar was quoted at ¥104.73-74, up from ¥104.29-30 at the same time Wednesday. The euro stood at $1.3607-3610, down from $1.3641-3642, and at ¥142.52-55, up from ¥142.26-27.

The manufacturing business conditions index for the state of New York shot up to 12.5 in January, far outpacing market expectations, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Also Wednesday, the U.S. Labor Department said the country’s producer prices rose 0.4 percent last month, the biggest increase since June.

These strong reports pushed up equity prices and long-term interest rates in the United States, providing an upward momentum to the U.S. currency, traders said.

In Tokyo, the greenback rose above ¥104.80 temporarily, backed by a rise in the Nikkei average. But the dollar faced adjustment sales at highs after the key stock price indicator lost ground toward the close, according to traders.

This week, the dollar has bounced back to levels near ¥105 after falling below ¥103 briefly following disappointing U.S. jobs data for December announced Friday.

“The jobs data shock has been wiped out nearly entirely,” said an official at a foreign brokerage.

U.S. economic data to be released Thursday include consumer prices for December, weekly jobless claims, a Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia survey of manufacturer for January and home builder confidence data also for January.