• Jiji

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The dollar was directionless around ¥106.35 in Tokyo trading Friday ahead of the release of key U.S. economic data.

At 5 p.m., the dollar stood at ¥106.36-37, against ¥106.35-35 at the same time Thursday. The euro was at $1.0824-0824, up from $1.0798-0799, and at ¥115.14-14, up from ¥114.85-85.

The dollar rose above ¥106.40 in the early morning helped by real demand-backed buying. But it soon lost steam and fell below ¥106.30 in midmorning trading due to selling on a rally, traders said.

A sharp rise in the Nikkei stock average helped push the greenback above ¥106.40 in the afternoon.

Later, however, the dollar grew directionless as a sense of caution spread ahead of the U.S. government’s jobs report for April due out Friday, traders said.

“Market players were reluctant to step up dollar-buying as tough results are expected,” a Japanese bank official said.

Meanwhile, an official of a foreign-exchange margin trading company predicted a limited reaction from markets, saying very bad results “have already been priced in.”

Dollar-yen trading was slow amid the extended state of emergency declared for the coronavirus pandemic in Japan and Friday’s market closure in Britain for a bank holiday, traders said.