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Greenback holding firm after solid consumer confidence data from US

TOKYO--The dollar stayed firm against other currencies in Asia on Wednesday, holding onto gains on data showing U.S. consumer confidence at a six-year high.

In Tokyo afternoon trade the greenback was at 102.27 yen against 102.25 yen in New York Tuesday afternoon.

The euro slipped to US$1.3812 from US$1.3825 in U.S. trade while fetching 141.28 yen against 141.36 yen.

“Gains in the U.S. were supported by a solid consumer confidence reading,” National Australia Bank said in a note.

The Conference Board's index for March consumer confidence came in at 82.3 — its highest since January 2008 — from 78.3 in February and far better than the 78.9 expected.

The euro lost ground after the German Ifo index of business confidence fell for the first time in five months during March.

The euro also weakened after a slew of policy makers from the European Central Bank and the European Commission decried the strength of the common currency and offered measures to stem the risk of deflation.

The Indian rupee kept rising as it slowly recovers from a sell-off that had been fuelled by the U.S. Federal Reserve's decision to start winding down its stimulus programme.

The dollar fell to 60.14 Indian rupees at one point, the lowest since late July, before changing hands at 60.27 rupees against 60.47 rupees Tuesday afternoon.

The greenback slipped to 45.04 Philippine pesos from 45.10 pesos, to SG$1.2677 from SG$1.2689, and to 1,074.38 South Korean won from 1,079.50 won.

But it rose to 11,402.50 Indonesian rupiah from 11,380.00 rupiah while fetching 32.59 Thai baht against 32.58 baht.

The Australian dollar rose to 91.93 U.S. cents from 91.26 cents after an upbeat comment from Australia's central bank chief Glenn Stevens.

“We think economic growth will continue and may strengthen a little later this year and pick up further during 2015,” he said at an investment conference in Hong Kong.

The Chinese yuan fetched 16.45 yen against 16.49 yen.

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