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dollar-608TOKYO: The dollar was mixed in Asia Friday as markets focused on poor growth data out of debt-hit Europe and worries about the so-called "fiscal cliff" reversing a recovery in the United States.


The dollar bought 79.59 yen in Tokyo trade, from 79.43 yen in New York late Thursday, while the euro was higher at $1.2777 from $1.2748.


Against the Japanese currency, the euro bought 101.69 yen from 101.28 yen.


Despite the yen's weakening in Friday's session, the unit has reasserted its safe-haven credentials recently as traders turn away from turmoil in Europe and worries about the world's biggest economy staging a firm comeback.


Stock and currency markets have been jittery over the so-called US "fiscal cliff", a package of spending cuts and tax hikes scheduled to come into effect on January 1 unless Congress reaches another spending deal.


In the wake of President Barack Obama's re-election, there are growing fears that the cuts would reverse a lumbering US economic recovery, possibly sending the country back into recession and dealing a huge blow to an already slowing global economy.


Traders also digested news of a possible delay in Greece's new austerity package, a deal necessary for the debt-hit nation to receive the next tranche of its international bailout, amid huge protests in the capital Athens.


The approval of some 31 billion euros in aid for Athens, which faces a huge debt repayment on November 16, will likely top the agenda at a eurozone finance ministers' meeting Monday in Brussels.


In widely expected moves Thursday, the Bank of England and European Central Bank held their main lending rates at 0.50 percent and 0.75 percent, respectively.


This week, the European Union cut its economic growth forecast and the head of the European Central Bank stoked worries about how slowing growth is hurting the continent's top economy, Germany.


-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this article


Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2012


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