By Dow Jones Business News, September 13, 2013, 01:32:00 AM EDT
--Dollar firm against yen ahead of FOMC next week
--Focus on U.S. indicators out later in the day
By Alexander Martin
The dollar was firm against the yen during Asian trading Friday as speculators stayed on the sidelines ahead of a
three-day weekend in Japan and the Federal Reserve's meeting next week, when policy makers are widely expected to
announce a tapering of the central bank's bond-buying program.
The greenback gained against the yen earlier in the morning when the Japanese government released its monthly economic
report in which it upgraded its assessment of the economy in September, reinforcing expectations the government will go
ahead with a planned two-stage consumption tax hike. But the pair remained in a tight range without strong direction
before a slate of U.S. indicators to be released later in the day.
Kengo Suzuki, forex strategist at Mizuho Securities, said the dollar could have difficulty breaching the Y100 mark
until the Fed's meeting wraps up. "The pair seems well-supported above Y99, but selling demand around Y100 seems to be
putting the brakes on the pair from moving higher," he said.
Junichi Ishikawa, market analyst at IG Securities in Tokyo, said the market was in "FOMC mode."
"In such a situation, the focus will continue to be on U.S. indicators," he said. U.S. retail sales for August and the
University of Michigan sentiment index for September will be watched, he added.
A strong reading could reinforce the view that the speed of recovery in private consumption was accelerating,
emboldening expectations for a tapering of the Fed's bond-buying program, he said.
Given the U.S. economy's mixed performance lately--including a slightly smaller-than-expected increase in employment
in August--many investors now see the Fed announcing a more modest pull-back from the bond-purchase program than
As of 0450 GMT, the dollar was at Y99.65 from Y99.55 late New York trading Thursday. The euro was at $1.3280 from $
1.3300 and at Y132.31 from Y132.37.
The Wall Street Journal Dollar Index, which tracks the U.S. dollar against a basket of currencies, was at about 73.910
from about 73.813.
Interbank Foreign Exchange Rates At 00:50 EST / 0450 GMT
Latest Previous %Chg Daily Daily %Chg
Dollar Rates Close High Low 12/31
USD/JPY Japan 99.63-66 99.52-56 +0.11 99.82 99.44 +14.87
EUR/USD Euro 1.3278-80 1.3298-301 -0.15 1.3303 1.3276 +0.64
GBP/USD U.K. 1.5790-94 1.5803-07 -0.08 1.5816 1.5790 -2.80
USD/CHF Switzerland 0.9323-26 0.9304-08 +0.20 0.9328 0.9302 +1.88
USD/CAD Canada 1.0325-28 1.0322-25 +0.03 1.0331 1.0324 +4.02
AUD/USD Australia 0.9249-52 0.9270-73 -0.23 0.9273 0.9238 -10.99
NZD/USD New Zealand 0.8112-16 0.8135-41 -0.29 0.8143 0.8106 -1.98
EUR/JPY Japan 132.31-34 132.35-40 -0.04 132.56 132.26 +15.62
Source: ICAP PLC
Write to Alexander Martin at email@example.com
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