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Dollar falls in Asia ahead of U.S. data

The dollar dipped in Asia Tuesday as momentum for its advance petered out after it failed to climb above the key 120 yen mark.

The dollar was trading at 119.50 yen midafternoon, down from 119.79 yen late Monday in New York. The euro fell to US$1.3545 from US$1.3549.

Traders who had speculated that the dollar may break above 120 yen started dumping it early in the session, traders said. Others were staying on the sidelines ahead of the major U.S. economic data, including the consumer price index and housing starts for March, set for release later in the day.

"The dollar is at a delicate level now and if both sets of figures are strong, this might give the currency a necessary boost to rise above 120 yen, while weaker results could cause it to fall below 119 yen," said Shuichi Kanehira, senior trader at Mizuho Corporate Bank.

"Of course, if one of them is strong and the other weak, it is very hard to predict which way the pair will go," he said.

The dollar was mixed against other regional currencies, gaining to 47.705 Philippine pesos from 47.580 the previous session, while slipping to 929.8 South Korean won from 931.6. It rose to 33.188 Taiwan dollars from 33.162.

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