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FOREX-Dollar strengthens as vaccine, stimulus optimism dented

    * Euro, sterling fall against dollar
    * U.S. dollar index up on stimulus, vaccine uncertainty
    * Graphic: World FX rates in 2020 tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E

 (Adds details, updates prices; previous LONDON)
    By Chuck Mikolajczak
    NEW YORK, Oct 13 (Reuters) - The U.S. dollar strengthened on
Tuesday as investors turned cautious after a Johnson & Johnson
Covid-19 study was paused while a gauge of inflation rose for a
fourth straight month. 
    Major equity averages were lower, partly due to a decline in
J&J shares after the company paused due to an unexplained
illness in a participant, dampening optimism a vaccine was on
the horizon. 
    U.S. consumer prices rose 0.2% in September, matching
expectations, for a fourth straight monthly climb, though the
pace has slowed amid considerable slack in the economy as it
gradually recovers from the COVID-19 recession.
    The dollar index rose 0.416% against a basket of
other currencies, putting it on track for its biggest daily
percentage gain in three weeks.     
    The U.S. currency's safe-haven appeal has been curbed by
growing expectations former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden's win
in the Nov. 3 presidential election would bring large stimulus
for the pandemic-hit economy, bolstering the stock market and
investor risk appetite. 
    The greenback has held within a range of about 2% over the
past three weeks as talks on a fiscal deal have progressed in
fits and starts. On Tuesday, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
said the offer President Donald Trump recently made on a package
after he scrapped talks fell far short of what the American
people need, but she still hopes a deal can be reached.

    Sterling was last trading at $1.2987, down 0.59%,
after climbing above the $1.30 mark for the first time in a
month on Friday as Britain's unemployment rate rose by more than
expected to 4.5% in the three months to August. 
    In addition, as a deadline looms, British Prime Minister
Boris Johnson told his top cabinet ministers on Tuesday he
wanted a free trade deal with the European Union on the right
terms but ending the year without one held "no fear."

    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 10:29 AM (1429 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar                  $1.1753        $1.1815     -0.52%         +4.83%      +1.1815     +1.1742
 Dollar/Yen                   105.5350       105.3550    +0.21%         -2.80%      +105.6200   +105.2900
 Euro/Yen                     124.03         124.40      -0.30%         +1.71%      +124.4700   +123.9800
 Dollar/Swiss                 0.9135         0.9092      +0.50%         -5.58%      +0.9142     +0.9091
 Sterling/Dollar              1.2988         1.3066      -0.60%         -2.07%      +1.3067     +1.2960
 Dollar/Canadian              1.3130         1.3109      +0.19%         +1.10%      +1.3146     +1.3100
 Aussie/Dollar                0.7165         0.7211      -0.64%         +2.12%      +0.7210     +0.7157
 Euro/Swiss                   1.0734         1.0738      -0.04%         -1.09%      +1.0745     +1.0726
 Euro/Sterling                0.9048         0.9040      +0.09%         +7.03%      +0.9074     +0.9020
 NZ                           0.6639         0.6647      -0.18%         -1.40%      +0.6670     +0.6630
 Dollar/Dollar                                                                                  
 Dollar/Norway                9.2020         9.1545      +0.60%         +4.99%      +9.2215     +9.1390
 Euro/Norway                  10.8160        10.7914     +0.23%         +9.94%      +10.8381    +10.7769
 Dollar/Sweden                8.8086         8.7884      -0.33%         -5.76%      +8.8280     +8.7569
 Euro/Sweden                  10.3539        10.3884     -0.33%         -1.10%      +10.4100    +10.3307
 

    

 (Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak)
  
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