January 4, 2018 / 8:10 PM / 6 months ago

FOREX-Dollar retreats versus most currencies; euro nears 3-year high

    * Dollar drops against currency basket after modest recovery
    * Strong U.S. ADP jobs report lends brief support
    * Greenback gains against yen as risk assets rally
    * Bitcoin down 0.8 percent

 (Adds comment, updates prices, table)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, Jan 4 (Reuters) - The dollar fell on Thursday,
failing to hold the previous day's gains on the back of upbeat
U.S. data, as the euro resumed a rally that has taken it near
its highest level in three years. 
    A stronger-than-expected U.S. private-sector jobs report
briefly helped the dollar pare losses versus the euro and extend
gains against the yen. But those moves were short-lived.
    "The market quickly faded the mini-rally in the dollar as
the trend gave way to what we have been seeing for the past
several weeks, which is dollar weakness," said Sireen Harajli,
currency strategist at Mizuho Corporate Bank in New York.
    She added that while the ADP number was better than forecast
and will probably lead to high expectations for the U.S.
non-farm payrolls report on Friday, the market does not seem to
be willing to push the dollar higher.
    U.S. private employers added 250,000 jobs in December, data
from ADP Research Institute showed, the biggest monthly increase
since March. Economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast a gain
of 190,000 jobs.
    With ADP out of the way, investors are now focused on
Friday's U.S. non-farm payrolls report, which is expected to
show job gains of 190,000 for December. 
    James Chen, head of FX research at Forex.com in Bedminster,
New Jersey said his firm's U.S. payrolls forecast is between
200,000-220,000 given the strong employment data in other
economic indicators.
    "Any result falling within or above this range is likely to
give the U.S. dollar a boost, as it would help confirm the Fed's
optimistic outlook for the economy and the path to higher
interest rates in 2018," Chen said.
    The dollar index, which measures the currency against a
basket of six major rivals, had slipped to its lowest
since Sept. 20 on Tuesday, as optimism about the euro zone
economy drove the euro above $1.20 for the first time in 3-1/2
months. The index was last down 0.3 percent at 91.878.
    The dollar had bounced on Wednesday after strong
manufacturing and construction data, as well as somewhat hawkish
Federal Reserve minutes.
    The dollar rose against the yen, however, up 0.2 percent at
112.78 yen on strong risk appetite across markets. 
    After earlier hitting a low of $1.2005, the euro recovered
to trade as high as $1.2089. The euro last changed hands
at $1.2068, up 0.5 percent
    Bitcoin, meanwhile, pared losses in late trading, down just
0.8 percent at $15,007 on the Bitstamp exchange. It
has lost more than a quarter of its value since hitting record
highs in mid-December.
    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 2:54PM (1954 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar      EUR=        $1.2069        $1.2012     +0.47%         +0.61%      +1.2089     +1.2005
 Dollar/Yen       JPY=        112.7500       112.4900    +0.23%         +0.07%      +112.8600   +112.4900
 Euro/Yen         EURJPY=     136.10         135.15      +0.70%         +0.68%      +136.3600   +135.1400
 Dollar/Swiss     CHF=        0.9746         0.9769      -0.24%         +0.03%      +0.9780     +0.9737
 Sterling/Dollar  GBP=        1.3552         1.3514      +0.28%         +0.30%      +1.3560     +1.3506
 Dollar/Canadian  CAD=        1.2495         1.2531      -0.29%         -0.65%      +1.2555     +1.2488
 Australian/Doll  AUD=        0.7860         0.7835      +0.32%         +0.76%      +0.7865     +0.7815
 ar                                                                                             
 Euro/Swiss       EURCHF=     1.1764         1.1737      +0.23%         +0.64%      +1.1775     +1.1734
 Euro/Sterling    EURGBP=     0.8903         0.8890      +0.15%         +0.23%      +0.8924     +0.8880
 NZ               NZD=        0.7159         0.7090      +0.97%         +1.03%      +0.7160     +0.7075
 Dollar/Dollar                                                                                  
 Dollar/Norway    NOK=        8.0570         8.1023      -0.56%         -1.83%      +8.1154     +8.0576
 Euro/Norway      EURNOK=     9.7262         9.7363      -0.10%         -1.24%      +9.7761     +9.7284
 Dollar/Sweden    SEK=        8.1305         8.1764      -0.10%         -0.87%      +8.1842     +8.1266
 Euro/Sweden      EURSEK=     9.8153         9.8248      -0.10%         -0.24%      +9.8337     +9.8064
 
    
 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; Editing by Meredith
Mazzilli and Lisa Shumaker)
  
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