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Dollar edges down to 102 yen range in Tokyo on U.S. fiscal woes.

TOKYO, Dec. 1 Kyodo

The U.S. dollar edged down to the upper 102 yen level Wednesday in Tokyo as market players remained wary of the U.S. currency's recent weakness against other major currencies on the back of U.S. fiscal woes.

At 5 p.m., the dollar was quoted at 102.77-79 yen, down from Tuesday's 5 p.m. quotes of 103.02-12 yen in New York and 103.15-18 yen in Tokyo.

It ranged between 102.64 yen and 103.11 yen during the day, changing hands most frequently at 102.80 yen.

The euro was quoted at $1.3322-3324 and 136.91-95 yen, compared with $1.3274-3284 and 136.78-88 yen at 5 p.m. Tuesday in New York.

Although there was no major fresh news prompting the dollar selling, the U.S. currency remained sluggish due to persisting dollar-bearish sentiment backed by speculation that the United States is tolerant of a weaker dollar to balance its huge current-account deficits, dealers said.

Dealers said that recently released positive U.S. economic data are having less impact on the dollar amid the dollar-bearish sentiment.

''The dollar's recent weakness is based on structural factors, and thus the market reacts less to cyclical economic movements,'' said Toru Sasaki, chief forex strategist at JP Morgan Chase Bank. He said that the dollar-selling trend will likely continue for the time being.

The currency market showed little reaction to reports Tuesday that the July-September U.S. gross domestic product data were revised upward to a 3.9 percent expansion from an initially reported 3.7 percent.

Meanwhile, some market players were cautious about unloading the dollar further on worries that Japanese monetary authorities may conduct dollar-buying, yen-selling intervention when the dollar falls below the 102 yen line, dealers said.

Japanese monetary authorities have repeatedly made comments suggesting they will take decisive action to stem the yen's sharp rise, which hurts Japanese exporters and dampens prospects for an export-driven economic recovery in Japan.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Date:Dec 13, 2004
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