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The dollar held steady on Friday with its near-term fortunes riding on whether U.S. jobs data will rekindle expectations for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates this year.

The British pound licked its wounds a day after the Bank of England not only cut interest rates but also restarted its bond purchase program to shore up the economy.

With the BoE decision now out of the way, the market's focus is shifting to the U.S. jobs report due at 1230 GMT.

A strong reading there could help the dollar by reviving expectations that the Federal Reserve could raise interest rates by year-end, a scenario that had been discarded in the days that followed the shocks from June's Brexit vote.

Although surprisingly tepid U.S. second-quarter GDP growth figures published last Friday have dented the dollar, the greenback has recovered slowly.

The dollar, which measures the greenback's value against a basket of six major currencies, was last trading at 95.719, up from Tuesday's five-week low of 95.003.

"The payroll growth in July is likely to be pretty strong. I expect a figure above 200,000. That should be positive for the dollar," said Ayako Sera, market strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank.

Economists polled by Reuters expect a non-farm payroll increase of 180,000. ECONUS

Average wage earnings, seen as a key factor in gauging the strength of any inflationary pressure, are expected to rise 0.2 percent.

The euro held steady at $1.1135, but was down 0.3 percent for the week.

Against the yen, the dollar slipped 0.1 percent to 101.15 yen, not far from the greenback's three-week low of 100.68 yen set on Tuesday.

Sterling edged up 0.2 percent to $1.3131, after sliding 1.6 percent on Thursday, its biggest fall in a month.

That hit for sterling came after the BoE cut interest rates to a record-low 0.25 percent, pledged 60 billion pounds ($78.71 billion) in government bond purchases and launched schemes to buy high-grade corporate bonds and ensure banks pass on the full rate cut to borrowers.

Now that sterling has broken below trend line support in place during its recovery from a three-decade low of $1.2798 on July 6, the currency is at risk of testing that low again, some analysts said.

Elsewhere, the Australian dollar rose 0.4 percent to $0.7657. For the week, the Aussie has gained 0.7 percent, showing resilience even after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut interest rates to a record low 1.5 percent on Tuesday.

Recent firmness in iron ore prices and a search for yield among investors have helped support the Australian dollar, said Roy Teo, senior FX strategist for ABN AMRO Bank in Singapore.

"But the higher the Australian dollar goes, the risk of RBA cutting rates will increase," Teo said, adding that such prospects could offer an opportunity to sell into the Aussie's rally.

The Australian dollar held firm despite a dovish quarterly economic assessment by the central bank on Friday that seemed to leave the door open to further cuts in interest rates.

The RBA said core inflation was likely to remain below target all the way to 2018 providing scope for the economy to run even faster.

"Positioning has certainly played a part in Aussie this week, short-covering taking it to these levels despite the RBA's rate cut and despite a dovish quarterly statement," said Sue Trinh, senior currency strategist for the Royal Bank of Canada in Hong Kong.

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