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FOREX-Dollar held down by doubts over pace of U.S. recovery; bitcoin retreats from record high

    * Dollar index near two-week low after retreat from
two-month high
    * Bitcoin dips below $46,000 a day after hitting record
$49,714.66
    * Graphic: World FX rates tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E

    By Kevin Buckland
    TOKYO, Feb 15 (Reuters) - The dollar started the week pinned
near two-week lows on Monday as traders questioned whether the
recovery from the pandemic in the United States would be as fast
as expected.
    Bitcoin remained volatile, retreating to as low
as $45,914.75 a day after reaching a record $49,714.66.
    The world's most popular cryptocurrency had rallied 25% last
week, driven by endorsements from Tesla and BNY Mellon
.
    The dollar index slipped 0.1% to 90.336, close to
last week's low of 90.249 - a level unseen since Jan. 27.
    The gauge hit a two-month top of 91.6 on Feb. 5 on hopes
that a U.S. rebound would outpace other major economies, but has
since pulled back amid disappointing employment data.
    "Now the market is looking for actual evidence that the U.S.
economy is outperforming," said Shinichiro Kadota, senior
currency strategist at Barclays Capital in Tokyo. 
    "The economic data needs to improve."
    The euro edged 0.1% higher to $1.21315, extending
last week's 0.6% advance.
    The dollar rose 0.1% to 105.04 yen, recovering
some of the previous week's 0.4% loss.
    Many financial markets in Asia remained closed on Monday for
Lunar New Year, with the United States also out for Presidents
Day.
    Riskier currencies gained against the greenback, with the
Australian dollar adding 0.3% to 77.795 U.S. cents after earlier
touching a one-month high of 77.85.
    The British pound appreciated 0.3% to $1.3895 after renewing
an almost-three-year high at $1.3901.
    The Chinese yuan reached its strongest level since June 2018
at 6.4012 per dollar in the offshore market.
    In cryptocurrencies, bitcoin last traded 3.7% lower at
$46,852.
    Rival virtual coin ethereum, which often trades
in tandem with bitcoin, slumped 4.3% to $1,725. It reached a
record high of $1,874.98 on Saturday.


========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 2:14PM (514 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Euro/Dollar                  $1.2134        $1.2119     +0.13%         -0.68%      +1.2138     +1.2117
 Dollar/Yen                   105.0220       104.9250    +0.11%         +1.70%      +105.1300   +105.0400
 Euro/Yen                     127.44         127.14      +0.24%         +0.41%      +127.5200   +127.1800
 Dollar/Swiss                 0.8909         0.8919      -0.11%         +0.70%      +0.8925     +0.8908
 Sterling/Dollar              1.3896         1.3852      +0.32%         +1.71%      +1.3900     +1.3863
 Dollar/Canadian              1.2665         1.2689      -0.18%         -0.53%      +1.2689     +1.2666
 Aussie/Dollar                0.7783         0.7760      +0.32%         +1.20%      +0.7784     +0.7760
 NZ                           0.7242         0.7215      +0.40%         +0.88%      +0.7243     +0.7207
 Dollar/Dollar All spots
Tokyo spots
Europe spots 
Volatilities 
Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ 

    
 (Reporting by Kevin Buckland; Editing by Himani Sarkar)
  
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