The euro strengthened against its major rivals in the Asian session on Friday, as European central bank announced a bigger-than-expected expansion of its pandemic emergency purchase program to help cushion a potential downturn caused by the virus outbreak.

The ECB increased the size of its emergency asset purchase programme, or PEPP, by EUR 600 billion to a total EUR 1,350 billion.

The program will run through at least the end of June 2021.

Maturing principal payments will be reinvested "until at least the end of 2022".

ECB President Christine Lagarde said the bloc was experiencing "an unprecedented contraction" and weak inflation.

"There has been an abrupt drop in economic activity as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the measures to contain it," Lagarde said.

Investors await the release of the closely-watched U.S. jobs data for May later today.

Economists currently expect employment to tumble by about 8.0 million jobs in May after plunging by 20.5 million jobs in April. The unemployment rate is expected to jump to 19.8 percent from 14.7 percent.

The euro firmed to a 5-month high of 1.0865 against the franc, compared to yesterday's closing value of 1.0833. Should the currency rallies again, 1.10 is possibly seen as its next resistance level.

The euro rose to 1.1384 against the greenback, its biggest level since March 10. The currency may test resistance around the 1.15 mark.

The single currency approached a 1-year high of 124.43 against the yen from Thursday's closing quote of 123.72. The euro may find resistance around the 127.00 region, if it rallies again.

Data from the Cabinet Office showed that the Japan leading index declined to the lowest in eleven years.

The leading index, which measures the future economic activity, fell to 76.2 in April from 85.1 in March. Economists had expected a score of 84.5.

The EUR/CAD pair hit 1.5346, setting a weekly high. The currency is poised to face resistance around the 1.55 mark.

In contrast, the euro edged down to 1.6207 against the aussie and 1.7439 against the kiwi, from yesterday's closing values of 1.6330 and 1.7534, respectively. The euro is seen finding support around 1.58 against the aussie and 1.66 against the kiwi. After rising to 0.9005 at 11:15 pm ET, the euro dropped to 0.8953 against the pound. On the downside, 0.86 is possibly seen as the next support level for the currency.

Looking ahead, the U.S and Canadian jobs data and Canada Ivey PMI, all for May, as well as U.S. consumer credit for April are due in the New York session.

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