Dollar dominates market, yen & Asian currencies drop over virus risks

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The Japanese yen is nearing its worst week in over two years on Friday as coronavirus concerns spread to Japan, Beijing, and South Korea, moving funds to the U.S. dollar.

The yen dropped to its lowest since April after two straight days of heavy selling, weak domestic data, and intensifying virus risks, causing investors to question it as a safe haven. It slid 2% against the dollar since Wednesday.

The current death toll of CODIV-19 in mainland China stands at 2,200, paralyzing China’s economy. South Korea reported 52 new infections, bringing the total to 156.

In Japan, two infected passengers died aboard a cruise ship, while two evacuees from the liner tested positive for the virus in Australia.

The yen stood at 112.09 against the dollar on early trade, a weakness shared by other Asian currencies.

The Korean won dropped by 2%, standing at over 1,200 against the dollar. The Australian dollar, on an 11-year low, and the New Zealand dollar lost 1.5% for the week and 5% for the year.

The Chinese yuan stands at 7.0547 against the dollar in offshore trade.

Meanwhile, the euro fell to a three-year low this week, trading at 1.0788 against the dollar. The pound is nearing a three-month low and stood at $1.2884.

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