FOREX-Dollar soars versus yen after stronger U.S. jobs data

Fri May 3, 2013 9:19am EDT

Related Topics

* Nonfarm payrolls rose 165,000 in April, jobless rate at 4-year low

* Dollar on pace for biggest one-day rise in two weeks vs yen

By Wanfeng Zhou

NEW YORK, May 3 (Reuters) - The dollar surged more than 1 percent against the yen and gained versus the euro on Friday after surprisingly strong U.S. April jobs data fuelled optimism the U.S. economy may be more resilient than some had feared.

U.S. employment rose more than expected in April with nonfarm payrolls rising 165,000, while job increases for the previous months were revised higher. The unemployment rate fell to a four-year low of 7.5 percent.

The dollar had come under pressure lately after disappointing economic data stoked concern about the recovery and investors pared back expectations the Federal Reserve may taper its bond purchases anytime soon.

"The spring slowdown may not be as pronounced as feared," said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst at Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington.

"It is good news for the dollar especially in light of the Fed's statement this week which put even more focus on upcoming U.S. economic numbers."

The dollar rose 1.3 percent to 99.19 yen, on pace for its biggest one-day rise in two weeks. It hit a session peak of 99.26 yen.

The Fed said on Wednesday after its policy meeting it will continue buying $85 billion in bonds each month to keep interest rates low and spur growth, and added it would step up purchases if needed to protect the economy.

"The job market and the economy in general appear to be more resilient than investors had feared," said Joe Manimbo, market analyst at Western Union Business Solutions in Washington.

"The weight this jobs report carries from month to month can go some way to reviving the notion that the Fed could taper later this year."

The euro slid 0.1 percent to $1.3048, erasing early gains. It fell sharply on Thursday when ECB President Mario Draghi said the bank was technically ready for negative deposit rates and noted downside risks to the economy.

The dollar index, which measures the dollar's performance against six major currencies, rose 0.3 percent to 82.446.

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