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FOREX-Yen, Swiss franc ascendant, risk aversion pummels Aussie, kiwi

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* Dollar drops from three-month highs as Treasury yields tumble * Spread of Delta variant fuels worries about global recovery * Euro also firmer in face of dollar weakness as havens sought By Kevin Buckland TOKYO, July 9 (Reuters) - The safe-haven yen and Swiss franc stood tall on Friday, while risk-sensitive currencies including the Australian and New Zealand dollars languished near multi-month lows as investors turned cautious about the global economic recovery. Bonds have rallied while stocks took a hammering worldwide amid growing concerns the fast-spreading Delta variant of COVID-19 could derail a revival that is already showing pockets of weakness. The benchmark U.S. Treasury yield dipped to a nearly five-month low of 1.25% overnight, from as high as 1.5440% just two weeks ago. That put pressure on the U.S. currency, with the dollar index left licking its wounds after a 0.36% slide on Thursday to stand at 92.372. On Wednesday, it had pushed to a three-month high of 92.8440. The euro benefited, holding on to a 0.45% jump from overnight to trade at $1.1846. The yen changed hands at 109.865 per dollar, maintaining gains from the previous session's 0.8% rally. "There is certainly a wind of change in markets," with concerns about inflation now shifting to concerns about growth, Rodrigo Catril, a strategist at National Australia Bank, wrote in a client note. "There has not been a single catalyst triggering a turn in sentiment, instead it seems that an accumulation of events," including the rapid spread of the Delta variant and perceptions that central bank tightening could choke the recovery, he said. Data on Thursday showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly last week, an indication that the labor market recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be choppy. The Swiss franc held on to gains from Thursday, when it soared more than 1%, to trade at 0.91540 per dollar. The Aussie slipped 0.1% to $0.74245 after dropping 0.7% on Thursday and touching its weakest since mid-December at $0.74170. New Zealand's kiwi languished at $0.69435, maintaining a more than 1% plunge from the previous session. ======================================================== Currency bid prices at 0101 GMT Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid Previous Change Session Euro/Dollar $1.1839 $1.1845 -0.04% -3.10% +1.1850 +1.1839 Dollar/Yen 109.8800 109.7750 +0.08% +6.37% +109.9200 +109.8000 Euro/Yen Dollar/Swiss 0.9155 0.9150 +0.05% +3.48% +0.9155 +0.9148 Sterling/Dollar 1.3784 1.3789 +0.01% +0.94% +1.3793 +1.3783 Dollar/Canadian 1.2534 1.2532 +0.01% -1.58% +1.2547 +1.2529 Aussie/Dollar 0.7422 0.7432 -0.12% -3.51% +0.7439 +0.7421 NZ 0.6940 0.6946 -0.06% -3.33% +0.6953 +0.6939 Dollar/Dollar All spots Tokyo spots Europe spots Volatilities Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ (Reporting by Kevin Buckland Editing by Shri Navaratnam)

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