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May 28, 2017

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Yen gains against greenback after US stocks fall

TOKYO--The yen rose against the dollar and euro Tuesday as cautious investors retreated to the Japanese currency after two of Wall Street's main stock indexes slid from recent record highs.

The dollar weakened to 101.79 yen in Tokyo afternoon trade from 101.87 yen late in New York and 102.11 yen in Tokyo earlier Monday.

The euro slipped to 138.46 yen from 138.59 yen, while it was nearly flat at US$1.3603 against US$1.3604 in U.S. trade.

Investors tend to seek out safe-haven currencies perceived to be lower-risk, such as the yen, during times of uncertainty.

On returning from a long weekend, equities in New York retreated Monday on profit-taking, after the Dow and S&P 500 finished at all-time highs at the end of last week in response to a better-than-expected rise in U.S. jobs.

U.S. corporate earnings for the second quarter are a key trading peg for gauging future U.S. stock prices, which may give direction to the dollar-yen rate, said Junichi Ishikawa, market analyst at IG Securities.

"The focus for now is whether the pair (dollar-yen) can break above 102.40," he added.

On Wednesday investors will be watching closely as the Federal Reserve releases the minutes of its most recent policy meeting.

And sentiment may get a boost from Chinese inflation and trade data this week if the figures point to a strengthening in the world's number two economy.

The euro held up relatively well despite European stock markets turning down after Germany posted its third monthly decline in factory output.

The dollar was mixed against other Asia-Pacific currencies.

It weakened to SG$1.2457 from SG$1.2464 on Monday, to 59.82 Indian rupees from 59.88 rupees, and to 11,696 Indonesian rupiah from 11,712.5 rupiah.

The greenback rose to 32.40 Thai baht from 32.39 baht, to 43.48 Philippine pesos from 43.47 pesos, to 1,011.11 South Korean won from 1,009.65 won.

The Australian dollar firmed to 93.86 U.S. cents from 93.58 cents, while the Chinese yuan eased to 16.40 yen from 16.44 yen.

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