Dollar steadies against yen, while Aussie dollar surges

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The dollar was almost flat against the yen during Asia trade Thursday, with brightened sentiment prompting selling of the Japanese currency and its perceived safety, which offset dollar selling by investors looking to lock in profits.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar jumped against its rival currencies following a sharp drop in the nation’s unemployment rate.

The U.S. dollar USDJPY, +0.10% was at ¥122.91, compared with ¥122.86 late Wednesday in New York.

Earlier in the session, the U.S. currency was drifting lower, tracking the overnight selling pressure with investors booking profits on the currency’s recent gains. But a late-morning rise in the Nikkei Stock Average, albeit at only a moderate pace, helped brighten the mood, prompting yen selling that pushed the dollar to as high as ¥123.04. The benchmark Nikkei NIK, +0.03% was up 0.01% midday.

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