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FOREX-Euro wilts as coronavirus lockdown worries hurt sentiment

    * Graphic: World FX rates in 2020 tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E
    * Report of new lockdowns in France hurts euro
    * Investors grow nervous before U.S. elections
    * Aussie in focus amid expectations for monetary easing

    By Stanley White
    TOKYO, Oct 28 (Reuters) - The euro fell against the dollar
on Wednesday following a media report that France's government
was leaning toward reinstating a national lockdown to curb a
resurgence in coronavirus cases.
    The dollar, however, gave up early gains and fell against
the yen as sentiment turned bearish due to uncertainty about the
outcome of the U.S. presidential election next week.
    The spike in infections "is certainly a concern for France
and southern Europe, so the euro's upside is heavy", said
Junichi Ishikawa, senior foreign exchange strategist at IG
Securities in Tokyo.
    He added that he does not expect the dollar to gain much
against other currencies, "because people have been overly
complacent about how markets will react after the U.S.
election". 
    The euro fell 0.14% to $1.1780 on Wednesday, down
for a third consecutive session.
    Sterling held steady at $1.3043, supported by hopes
for a last-minute trade deal between Britain and the European
Union.
    The dollar fell to 104.23 yen, approaching a
one-month low.
    Traders are bracing for more volatility in currency markets
as the virus spreads in Europe, Britain, and the United States,
fanning concerns that economic growth will weaken once again.
    French President Emmanuel Macron will give a televised
address on Wednesday evening. 
    His office has not said what the speech is about, but local
media has reported that the government is exploring imposing a
lockdown from midnight on Thursday. 
    
    FOCUS ON U.S. ELECTIONS
    Traders, however, say the bigger focus is on the United
States, which is also struggling to contain the coronavirus as
people vote early before elections on Nov. 3.
    Polls show Democrat rival Joe Biden has a lead over
incumbent Republican President Donald Trump, but some investors
are sceptical because the polls did not predict Trump's victory
four years ago.
    Legal battles between Republicans and Democrats over how to
count votes have raised the risk that the outcome of the
election will be disputed, which is a negative factor for the
dollar, some analysts say.
    Sentiment for the greenback has also weakened after Trump
conceded that an additional round of U.S. fiscal stimulus is
unlikely before the election.
    The onshore yuan fell slightly to 6.7097 against
the dollar, extending a pullback from a 27-month high hit last
week as the People's Bank of China takes steps to curb the
currency's appreciation. 
    The Australian dollar edged higher after data
showed consumer prices in the third quarter rose 1.6% from the
prior quarter, slightly more than the median estimate.
    The Reserve Bank of Australia is widely expected to lower
interest rates and expand its government debt purchases at its
next meeting on Nov. 3.
    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 1:50PM (0450 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar                  $1.1780        $1.1796     -0.14%         +5.08%      +1.1799     +1.1770
 Dollar/Yen                   104.2150       104.4350    -0.16%         -4.00%      +104.5500   +104.2700
 Euro/Yen                     122.75         123.14      -0.32%         +0.66%      +123.1800   +122.7600
 Dollar/Swiss                 0.9089         0.9088      +0.02%         -6.06%      +0.9099     +0.9086
 Sterling/Dollar              1.3041         1.3047      -0.04%         -1.67%      +1.3042     +1.3020
 Dollar/Canadian              1.3187         1.3187      +0.00%         +1.51%      +1.3199     +1.3185
 Aussie/Dollar                0.7144         0.7129      +0.20%         +1.80%      +0.7145     +0.7113
 NZ                           0.6709         0.6708      +0.03%         -0.28%      +0.6710     +0.6693
 Dollar/Dollar All spots
Tokyo spots
Europe spots 
Volatilities 
Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ 

 (Reporting by Stanley White; editing by Richard Pullin, Himani
Sarkar and Kim Coghill)
  
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