FOREX-Yen selling pauses as markets look to U.S. jobs data
* Yen recovers after big fall but selling expected to resume * Poor U.S. non-farm figures could weigh on dollar vs yen * But dollar still on track to rise towards 100 yen * German industrial orders rise more than forecast By Jessica Mortimer LONDON, April 5 (Reuters) - The yen recovered against the dollar on Friday as investors took profit on a steep slide prompted by a surprisingly radical monetary expansion drive from the Bank of Japan. The market's focus shifted to U.S. jobs data due at 1230 GMT, which could weigh on the dollar if it is weaker than forecast. But the dollar's gains against the yen were expected to resume soon as the BOJ's aggressive monetary easing, unveiled on Thursday, grinds down the yen in the weeks and months to come. The dollar extended Thursday's gains to hit a peak of 97.20 yen on trading platform EBS in Asian trade, a level not seen since August 2009, but it then pared gains and was last down 0.2 percent on the day at 96.08 yen. The dollar was still up nearly 11 percent against the yen so far this year, with Thursday's BOJ decision causing the biggest one-day fall in the Japanese currency since late 2008. "The moves yesterday were excessive ... so we are seeing a pull-back and some profit taking," said Valentin Marinov, head of European G10 FX strategy at Citi. "That said, the trend in dollar/yen is on the upside. It feels like investors will use dips to jump on the bandwagon of the short yen trade before long." Traders were also wary the U.S. non-farm payrolls data could be well below the consensus forecast for 200,000 jobs to be created in March, especially after weak private payrolls figures earlier this week. "The market is expecting to be disappointed with U.S. non-farms. A reading of 150,000 is probably where we at in terms of expectations now - anything less than that is not factored in and would send the dollar weaker," said Neil Jones, head of hedge fund FX sales, at Mizuho Corporate Bank. But market participants expected the yen would soon resume its falls against the dollar. Aggressive monetary easing in Japan contrasts with expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will reduce the size of its asset purchases later this year, effectively tightening policy as other major central banks look poised to ease. Mizuho's Jones said he had brought forward his forecast for the dollar to reach 100 yen from June to the end of this month, with a potential for it to firm towards 105 or 110 in the next 12 months. "Whereas before 100 in dollar/yen was seen as particularly aggressive and somewhat wild it now seems relatively tame ... I do think yesterday's BOJ was a game-changer." The BOJ's new governor, Haruhiko Kuroda, committed the central bank to open-ended asset purchases as he promised to inject about $1.4 trillion into the economy in less than two years. GERMAN ORDERS JUMP As the yen rebounded broadly the euro traded down 0.2 percent at 124.36 yen. It rose 4.3 percent on Thursday, its biggest one-day gain against the yen since November 2008, and then hit a peak around 125.61 yen in Asian trade on Friday. The euro was down 0.1 percent on the day at $1.2920 but holding well above a 4-1/2-month low of $1.2740 on Thursday, after data showed a bigger-than-expected jump in German industrial orders. The euro lost ground on Thursday after European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi said the bank stood ready to act if growth continued to languish and then recovered as he stressed that the Cyprus bailout deal was not a template for future rescues.
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