European focus: the dollar rose to a two-week high against the yen before a U.S. report today that may show employers added jobs for a third month.
The euro headed for a weekly loss versus 15 of its 16 major counterparts amid concern that European governments will struggle to raise funds as the region’s fiscal crisis lingers. The Australian dollar traded at a two-week low against its U.S. counterpart as worsening floods hampered the South Pacific nation’s coal industry. An ADP Employer Services report on Jan. 5 showed U.S. companies hired almost triple the number of people estimated by economists.
“It’s payrolls and looking at the better tone of the dollar this week, or at least since the ADP; the market is clearly expecting something fairly decent,” said Jane Foley, a senior foreign-exchange strategist at Rabobank International in London. “Dollar-yen is just displaying the broad-based dollar strength that we’ve seen this week.”
The dollar rose 0.2 percent to 83.51 yen at 10:08 a.m. in London, after touching 83.60 yen, the highest level since Dec. 22. The euro depreciated for a fifth day to $1.2992, after earlier falling to $1.2961, the weakest since Sept. 15. The single currency was at 108.51 yen from 108.35 yen.
Australia’s currency bought 99.17 U.S. cents from 99.44 cents yesterday, extending declines into a fifth day. The Aussie earlier touched 99.08 cents, the least since Dec. 21, and is set for a 3.1 percent drop this week. The so-called Aussie was little changed at 82.82 yen from 82.85 yen.
Economists have raised forecasts for the number of jobs added by U.S. employers in December after a report this week showed the biggest jump in company payrolls since records began in 2001.