Source AP ©

Dollar changes little against yen and euro

The dollar was little changed against the yen and euro Friday in Asia as traders and investors awaited the release of U.S. jobs data for clues to the greenback's near-term trend.

The U.S. dollar was trading at 116.48 yen midafternoon, slightly lower than 116.51 yen late Thursday in New York. The euro rose to US$1.4132 from US$1.4117.

Asian trading remained subdued as many players held back ahead of September U.S. employment data due later Friday in Washington.

Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires said U.S. employers, excluding farmers, probably added a net 100,000 workers to their payrolls in September. That would be a turnaround from the previous month's unexpected cut of 4,000 workers - a result that marked the first reduction in four years and fueled worries about the health of the U.S. economy.

Many traders still think the dollar is in a broad-based downtrend that could last for some time.

But "given that the markets have been pretty bearish toward the dollar recently, there could be a sharp market reaction if the data beat forecasts," said Osao Iizuka, head of foreign-exchange trading at Sumitomo Trust & Banking.

Meanwhile, signs of continued jobs growth could help allay worries - at least temporarily - that the troubled housing market is taking a larger-than-expected toll on the broader U.S. economy, traders said.

Against other regional currencies, the dollar was mostly lower, falling to 915.8 South Korean won from 916.5 the previous day, and to 7.7582 Hong Kong dollars from 7.7586. It rose to 39.480 Indian rupees from 39.45.

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