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Dollar lower in Asia after upbeat data

TOKYO--The dollar drifted lower in Asia Thursday as upbeat U.S. data and dovish comments from Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen suggested the central bank would hold steady on the pace of its stimulus tapering.

In Tokyo afternoon trade, the greenback slipped to 102.02 yen from 102.25 yen in New York on Wednesday.

The euro rose to US$1.3837 from US$1.3815, while it weakened to 141.17 yen from 141.28 yen.

In other trading, the British pound rose to US$1.6831, touching its highest level since mid-2009 and up from US$1.6795 in U.S. trade where it rose after Britain's unemployment rate fell below 7.0 percent, a five-year low that came as the country's economic recovery gains pace.

The yen has enjoyed support since last week when the Bank of Japan stood pat on further monetary easing.

“The yen has been supported, mainly on the back of stabilizing BOJ monetary policy expectations,” Credit Agricole said.

“According to the central bank, growth and inflation have been developing in line with market expectations. This suggests that there is little room of the BOJ becoming more aggressive anytime soon.

In other trade, the greenback weakened to SG$1.2506 from SG$1.2514 on Wednesday, to 1,037.69 South Korean won from 1,038.26 won and to 44.44 Philippine pesos from 44.51 pesos.

It also slipped to 11,431.00 Indonesian rupiah from 11,480.00 rupiah, and to 32.22 Thai baht form 32.33 baht.

The U.S. unit firmed to 60.37 Indian rupees from 60.25 rupees.

The Australian dollar weakened to 93.61 U.S. cents from 93.72 cents while the Chinese yuan fetched 16.41 yen against 16.42 yen.

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