June 7, 2013 / 11:31 AM / in 5 years

FOREX-Dollar extends slide versus yen before U.S. jobs data

* Dollar hits fresh 2-month low versus yen

* Breaks below key chart support before key U.S. jobs data

* Weak number could see dollar drop towards 93 yen: analyst

* Dollar could recover on in-line or strong data

By Jessica Mortimer

LONDON, June 7 (Reuters) - The dollar slid to a two-month low against the yen on Friday, extending steep falls the previous day, before jobs data that could push the U.S. currency even lower if it comes in below forecast.

The dollar fell 1.6 percent to 95.52 yen on the EBS trading platform, its lowest since early April, having suffered its biggest one-day fall in three years on Thursday.

U.S. non-farm payrolls at 1230 GMT are expected to show a 170,000 rise in May, according to a Reuters poll.

Recent data has raised concern the jobs number could be weak and weigh further on the dollar as the prospect of the Federal Reserve reducing asset purchases soon looks more remote.

The dollar extended falls after breaking below a reported options barrier at 95.50 and strong chart support at 95.40 yen, the bottom of the daily Ichimoku cloud, a closely-watched technical indicator.

Traders and analysts said it risked further falls.

The jobs data is seen as particularly important because the Federal Reserve has said it will only reduce its bond buying when it sees a significant improvement in the labour market.

“A strong number would highlight the risk of tapering as soon as September and would be dollar positive, but if we get a number around 100-120,000 then this could mean the Fed would rather wait,” Citi G10 currency strategist Valentin Marinov said

He said 93 yen “could be on the cards” if the data was weak.

Recent weaker U.S. data has prompted investors to pare back their very hefty bets on a stronger dollar placed on expectations the Fed will tighten monetary policy.

But some analysts said the dollar’s very steep falls meant it could need a very disappointing number to push it even lower.

“A number even matching consensus could see the dollar get a bit of a bid,” said Daragh Maher, currency strategist at HSBC.

Against a currency basket the dollar was down 0.3 percent at 81.316, having hit a three-month low of 81.077 on Thursday.

The euro edged up 0.1 percent to $1.3252, having hit a three-month peak of $1.3306 on Thursday after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi gave no hints that further monetary easing was imminent.

But the euro slid against a broadly firmer yen, which usually gains during financial uncertainty. It lost more than 1.5 percent to hit 126.27 yen, its lowest since mid-April.

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