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Yen Sinks, Nikkei Surges On Big Japanese Stimulus

The dollar rose to 97.06 yen from 96.13 yen late Thursday. The dollar was at about 92.80 before the BOJ's two-day policy meeting ended with its dramatic announcements Thursday. The dollar stood at around 80 yen before Abe's Dec. 16 election.

Elsewhere in Asia, however, stock markets sagged after a report showed the number of Americans seeking unemployment aid rose to a four-month high of 385,000 last week. The government will issue its employment report Friday, which investors look at closely for insight into how the U.S. economy is doing.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng tumbled 2.4 percent to 21,804.15. South Korea's Kospi dropped 2 percent to 1,920.05, dragged down by political jitters over the latest tensions with Pyongyang. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.3 percent to 4,900.50 as investors took profits after recent rallies.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed higher Thursday, regaining half of its decline the day before, as investors took advantage of low prices to get back into the market.

The Dow rose 0.4 percent at 14,606.11. The S&P 500 gained 0.4 percent to 1,559.98. The Nasdaq composite dropped 0.2 percent to 3,224.98.

Benchmark oil for May delivery was up 7 cents to $93.33 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell $1.19 to finish at $93.26 per barrel on the Nymex on Thursday.

The euro fell to $1.2930 from $1.2939 late Thursday in New York.

___

Follow Pamela Sampson on Twitter at http://twitter.com/pamelasampson

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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