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FOREX-Yen rises on renewed surge in virus cases; dollar index falls
Published at 10/07/2020 at 16:18

* U.S. producer prices fall in June, dollar weaker

* U.S. COVID cases post one-day record on Thursday

* Yuan dips but stays near 4-month high

* Graphic: World FX rates in 2020

(Adds new comment, FX table, updates prices, changes byline, dateline; previous LONDON)

By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss

NEW YORK, July 10 (Reuters) - The safe-haven Japanese yen climbed to a two-week peak against the dollar on Friday, lifted by concerns about a surge in coronavirus infections in the United States and around the world.

The yen was on track to post its largest daily percentage gain against the dollar in about a month.

The greenback fell against a basket of major currencies, pressured by weaker-than-expected U.S. producer prices in June as well as positive news about the potential coronavirus vaccine remdesivir that hurt the dollar's status as a safe haven.

More than 60,500 new COVID-19 infections were reported across the United States on Thursday, according to a Reuters tally, the largest one-day increase in any country since the pandemic emerged in China last year.

There were also alarming new spikes in infections in some Asia Pacific cities that appeared to have contained the disease, such as Tokyo, Hong Kong and Melbourne.

"Growth worries stalked markets, buoying safe bets like the yen and gold," said Joe Manimbo, senior market analyst, at Western Union Business Solutions in Washington.

He cited the rise in COVID cases globally and recent U.S. economic data, which has "shown signs of improvement," but "the pace has started to tail off."

U.S. producer prices unexpectedly fell 0.2% in June, after rebounding 0.4% in May, as the economy battles depressed demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also weighing on the dollar was news that Gilead Sciences Inc said additional data from a late-stage study showed its antiviral remdesivir reduced the risk of death and significantly improved the conditions of severely ill COVID-19 patients.

In late morning trading, the dollar fell 0.5% against the yen to 106.66 yen .

"The Japanese yen has been trading within a very tight trading range throughout the crisis. We're definitely back towards the bottom of that range," said Lee Hardman, currency analyst at MUFG.

The dollar index also fell 0.3% to 96.451

The euro rose 0.3% against the dollar to $1.1318 , while the British pound was up 0.4% at $1.2655 .

The Chinese yuan in the offshore market was down about 0.1% at 7.0039 per U.S. dollar , having touched a near-four-month high of 6.9808 on Thursday.

The Chinese currency has gained almost 1% this week, supported by hopes of capital inflows as share prices rebounded after Beijing indicated it wants a healthy bull market.

========================================================

Currency bid prices at 11:02AM (1502 GMT)

Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid

Previous Change

Session

Euro/Dollar EUR= $1.1316 $1.1281 +0.31% +0.95% +1.1324 +1.1256

Dollar/Yen JPY= 106.7200 107.1900 -0.44% -1.97% +107.2600 +106.6500

Euro/Yen EURJPY= 120.81 120.95 -0.12% -0.94% +121.0600 +120.2800

Dollar/Swiss CHF= 0.9391 0.9402 -0.12% -2.97% +0.9431 +0.9386

Sterling/Dollar GBP= 1.2659 1.2604 +0.44% -4.53% +1.2663 +1.2568

Dollar/Canadian CAD= 1.3587 1.3584 +0.02% +4.61% +1.3631 +1.3575

Australian/Doll AUD= 0.6956 0.6963 -0.10% -0.94% +0.6969 +0.6925

ar

Euro/Swiss EURCHF= 1.0630 1.0609 +0.20% -2.05% +1.0638 +1.0608

Euro/Sterling EURGBP= 0.8939 0.8949 -0.11% +5.75% +0.8970 +0.8939

NZ NZD= 0.6577 0.6568 +0.14% -2.35% +0.6588 +0.6547

Dollar/Dollar

Dollar/Norway NOK= 9.4192 9.4645 -0.48% +7.30% +9.5467 +9.4115

Euro/Norway EURNOK= 10.6625 10.6843 -0.20% +8.40% +10.7545 +10.6565

Dollar/Sweden SEK= 9.1713 9.2331 -0.39% -1.88% +9.2814 +9.1699

Euro/Sweden EURSEK= 10.3797 10.4200 -0.39% -0.85% +10.4527 +10.3778

(Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; Additional reporting by Iain Withers in London; Editing by David Gregorio)

((gertrude.chavez@thomsonreuters.com; 646-301-4124; Reuters Messaging: rm://gertrude.chavez.reuters.com@reuters.net))