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Asian shares retreat as strong yen batters Japan

Asian shares retreat as strong yen batters Japan

Asian stock markets fell Friday as a strong yen dragged on Japanese shares and uncertainty clouded sentiment ahead of a key U.S. jobs report due later in the day.
The Nikkei 225 stock average fell 0.4 percent to 9,640.58 after the Japanese currency hit a new 15-year-high against the dollar. The dollar fell to 82.12 yen at one point Thursday in New York.
South Korea's Kospi lost 0.5 percent to 1,892.06, and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.4 percent at 4,669.80.
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.2 percent to close at 10,948.58.
Slightly better news on claims for U.S. unemployment insurance gave stocks there an early lift, but the gains faded quickly as traders opted for caution ahead of Friday's employment report from the Labor Department, the most crucial piece of news on the economic calendar.
The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 0.2 percent to 1,158.06, while the Nasdaq composite rose 0.1 percent to 2,383.67.
Gold, which is considered a safe alternative to the dollar, hit another record of $1,366.00 an ounce early Thursday before pulling back to $1,335.00.
In currencies, the dollar was trading at 82.34 yen from 82.30 yen late Thursday. The euro held steady at $1.3917.


Updated : 2021-10-18 23:20 GMT+08:00