Yen's decline brings fall for Aussie
A sharp fall in the value of the Japanese yen has pushed the Australian dollar lower against the greenback.
On Friday afternoon the currency was at $US104.15, down from $US104.41 on Thursday.
Commonwealth Bank currency strategist Peter Dragicevich said news of Japan's massive quantitative easing program had boosted the US dollar against all major currencies since Thursday afternoon. "That demand for the US dollar has weighed on all currencies against the US dollar," he said.
The Bank of Japan on Thursday announced plans to spend 7 trillion yen ($70 billion) a month on assets such as Japanese government bonds as it tries to stimulate growth after two decades of stagnation.
Mr Dragicevich said the Australian dollar had risen sharply against the yen, pushing past the 100 yen level for the first time since August 2008.
He said the US dollar had risen even more, pushing up its relative value against the Australian dollar.
The key driver for the Australian dollar would be the release of the closely watched monthly US employment figures for March, he said.
AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver said while the rise in the Australian dollar was a negative for inbound tourism from Japan, it was unlikely to have much impact on Australian manufacturers given the limited exports to Japan.
"Quite clearly Australian consumers could be big winners with the 20 per cent-plus gain in the Australian dollar [in] the last six months likely to lead to lower prices for Japanese imports of things like cars and electronic goods," he said.
Dr Oliver said the outlook for the Australian dollar remained "messy".
Mixed Australian economic data is a negative but quantitative easing in the US and Japan is a positive, for a likely range of US95¢ to US110¢.