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Commodity Currencies Rise As Most Asian Markets Traded Higher

Commodity currencies such as the Australian, the New Zealand and the Canadian dollars strengthened against their major counterparts in the Asian session on Friday, as crude oil rebounded in Asian trades. However, gains are modest in most markets as investors turned cautious ahead of the release of the closely-watched U.S. monthly jobs report on Friday.

A report showing continued job growth in February is likely to further reinforce expectations that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates at its monetary policy meeting next week.

Crude for April delivery is currently up by 0.36 percent or $49.64 per barrel.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank left interest rates and its quantitative easing programme unchanged despite some calls for tightening monetary policy.

The ECB's monthly bond-buying program will run until at least December, slowing to 60 billion euros ($63 billion) in April from the current 80 billion euros.

Thursday, the Australian, the New Zealand and the Canadian dollars had fallen against their major counterparts.

The Australian dollar 0.30 fell percent against the U.S. dollar, 0.17 percent against the yen and 0.75 percent against the euro. The NZ dollar fell 0.21 percent against the U.S. dollar, 0.26 percent against the yen and 0.63 percent against the euro. The Canadian dollar fell 0.25 percent against the U.S. dollar, 0.34 percent against the yen and 0.68 percent against the euro.

In the Asian trading, the Australian dollar rose to a 3-day high of 86.70 against the yen, from yesterday's closing value of 86.24. The aussie may test resistance around the 88.00 region.

Against the U.S. dollar, the euro and the Canadian dollar, the aussie advanced to 0.7524, 1.4074 and 1.0159 from yesterday's closing quotes of 0.7503, 1.4092 and 1.0136, respectively. If the aussie extends its uptrend, it is likely to find resistance around 0.77 against the greenback, 1.36 against the euro and 1.02 against the loonie.

The NZ dollar rose to a 3-day high of 79.68 against the yen, from yesterday's closing value of 79.27. The kiwi may test resistance near the 82.00 region.

Against the euro and the U.S. dollar, the kiwi advanced to 1.5316 and 0.6916 from yesterday's closing quotes of 1.5334 and 0.6899, respectively. If the kiwi extends its uptrend, it is likely to find resistance around 1.50 against the euro and 0.70 against the greenback.

The kiwi edged up to 1.0871 against the Australian dollar, from an early low of 1.0896. The kiwi is likely to find resistance around the 1.06 region.

The Canadian dollar rose to a 1-week high of 85.40 against the yen, from yesterday's closing value of 85.05. The loonie may test resistance around the 86.00 region.

Against the U.S. dollar and the euro, the loonie advanced to 1.3495 and 1.4283 from yesterday's closing quotes of 1.3510 and 1.4288, respectively. If the loonie extends its uptrend, it is likely to find resistance around 1.33 against the greenback and 1.40 against the euro.

Meanwhile, the safe-haven yen dropped against its major rivals amid rising risk appetite.

The yen fell to more than a 1-month low of 122.23 against the euro and a 5-week low of 113.99 against the Swiss franc, from yesterday's closing quotes of 121.56 and 113.53, respectively. If the yen extends its downtrend, it is likely to find support around 124.00 against the euro and 114.50 against the franc.

Against the pound and the U.S. dollar, the yen dropped to a 4-day low of 140.25 and nearly a 1-1/2-month low of 115.35 from yesterday's closing quotes of 139.79 and 114.92, respectively. The yen is likely to find support around 143.00 against the pound and 117.00 against the greenback.

Looking ahead, the German trade balance for January and wholesale price index for February are due to be released in the pre-European session at 2:00 am ET.

U.K. industrial production, trade data and construction output for January is slated for release at 4:30 am ET.

In the New York session, Canada and U.S. jobs data for February and U.S. Baker Hughes rig count data are set to be announced.

At 2:00 pm ET, U.S. Federal Reserve monthly budget balance statement is set to be published.

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