After moving notably higher over the past few days, the value of the U.S. dollar has shown a modest move back to the downside during trading on Thursday.

Reflecting the slight pullback by the greenback, the U.S. dollar index is down by 0.10 points or 0.1 percent at 102.39.

The dollar is trading at 144.63 yen versus the 143.29 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Wednesday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.0948 compared to yesterday's $1.0922.

The modest decrease by the dollar comes as traders look ahead to the release of the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report on Friday.

Economists currently expect employment to increase by 170,000 jobs in December after jumping by 199,000 jobs in November. The unemployment rate is expected to inch up to 3.8 percent from 3.7 percent.

Ahead of the Labor Department report, payroll processor ADP released a report showing private sector employment in the U.S. increased by more than expected in the month of December.

ADP said private sector employment climbed by 164,000 jobs in December after rising by a downwardly revised 101,000 jobs in November.

Economists had expected private sector employment to grow by 115,000 jobs compared to the addition of 103,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

A separate report released by the Labor Department showed first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits fell by much more than expected in the week ended December 30th.

The Labor Department said initial jobless claims declined to 202,000, a decrease of 18,000 from the previous week's revised level of 220,000.

Economists had expected jobless claims to edge down to 216,000 from the 218,000 originally reported for the previous week.

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