* Dollar dips vs yen but still near 100 threshold
* Wall St gains on earnings, tech sector
* Gold jumps over 2 pct, rebounding from last week’s tumble
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, April 22 (Reuters) - The dollar slipped against the Japanese yen on Monday but remained within a hair’s breadth of the key 100 level while global equities erased earlier losses as Wall Street attempted a rebound after its worst weekly decline this year.
U.S. stocks mostly rose by afternoon trade on Wall Street, reversing earlier declines on strength in technology shares, while the energy and material sectors advanced on encouraging results such as Caterpillar Inc and Halliburton.
The day’s biggest gainers were in cyclical sectors, groups closely tied to the pace of economic growth. Last week, concerns about growth sparked steep declines in cyclical equities.
“Ultimately, we think cyclical names will lead the market higher, but in the short term, the decline could continue,” said Eric Green, senior portfolio manager at Penn Capital Management in Philadelphia, who said that cyclical stocks were oversold.
In the currency market, the dollar climbed as high as 99.90 yen, within striking distance of a four-year high of 99.95 set on April 11 and the 100 level, where option barriers are said to be lined up. At 1358 EDT, it was at 99.240 yen, down 0.5 percent .
Japanese officials said that the Group of 20 nations accepted that the country’s $1.4 trillion stimulus program is aimed at conquering 15 years of deflation rather than at weakening the yen.
“The lack of pushback by the G20 effectively gives the BOJ room to ease further if needed and should keep the yen biased broadly lower,” said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst with Commonwealth Foreign Exchange Inc in Washington, DC.
The G20’s actions removed any remaining obstacles to further yen weakness, setting up a test of the symbolic 100 yen to the dollar level and boosting demand for Japanese stocks.
Major central banks have been holding interest rates at rock-bottom levels since 2008 while pumping over $6 trillion into their banking systems through loans and asset-purchase operations, with only modest success so far.
The euro also remained vulnerable against the dollar on central bank expectations. On Monday the single currency fell 0.2 percent to $1.3049.
On Wall Street, Caterpillar Inc and Halliburton ranked among the S&P 500’s biggest gainers after reporting results. Caterpillar shares were up 2.5 percent at $82.45 and Halliburton rose 5.2 percent to $39.14.
European shares ended higher as signs of progress to break political stalemate in Italy outweighed fresh downbeat earnings news and concern over the health of the global economy.
Milan’s FTSE MIB index, up 1.7 percent, proved the regional outperformer for most of the day after the re-election of Italy’s president. Broad agreement among various political groups raised the prospect of an end to two months of stalemate after an inconclusive election.
The broad FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.2 percent.
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 12.42 points, or 0.09 percent, at 14,535.09. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 4.04 points, or 0.26 percent, at 1,559.29. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 20.30 points, or 0.63 percent, at 3,226.35.
MSCI’s world equity index added 0.2 percent.
In commodity markets, gold rebounded from its sharp sell-off last week, though sentiment remained shaky after the precious metal posted its biggest-ever daily loss in dollar terms last Monday.
Spot gold rose more than 2 percent to a session-high of $1,438.66 per ounce, more than $100 above the two-year low of $1,321 hit on April 16.
Brent crude futures edged up to hover above $100, extending gains from the two previous sessions as cheap prices from last week’s selloff drew buyers back into the market.
June Brent crude rose 65 cents to $100.30 a barrel, down from a high of $101.04. The May U.S. contract, which expires Monday, was up 64 cents to $88.65 after reaching a high of $89.13.
In Treasuries, the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was up 3/32, with the yield at 1.6929 percent.