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Yen gains ground against dollar, euro in Asia

TOKYO--The yen climbed against the dollar and euro on Monday after hitting five-year lows last week, but analysts said the rebound will likely only be short-lived.

In afternoon Tokyo trade, the dollar bought 104.30 yen, compared with 104.85 yen in New York Friday, and well off the 105.41 yen range seen on Dec. 30 — the greenback's strongest level since October 2008.

The euro also slipped to 141.55 yen from 142.44 yen in U.S. trade, after hitting 145.69 yen last Monday — also its best since October 2008. The single currency fetched US$1.3572, against US$1.3586.

Tokyo's big-spending and easy money policies, aimed at kick-starting the Japanese economy, helped send the yen down by about one-quarter against the dollar since late 2012, while the euro has also benefited from an improvement in the eurozone outlook.

Investors will be keeping a close eye on U.S. payrolls data at the end of the week after the Federal Reserve's announcement last month that it would cut its bond-buying program by US$10 billion to US$75 billion a month in January.

The pullback had hinged on a signs of a firm recovery in the world's biggest economy, and there is now speculation that the Fed may announce a further reduction at its January meeting.

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