* Dollar index trades above 6-month lows
* Philadelphia Fed factory activity index jumps in May
* Yen, Swiss franc trade below this week's highs
* Brazil's real nursing losses after overnight slide
SINGAPORE, May 19 The dollar traded above
six-month lows against a basket of six major peers on Friday,
having gained some reprieve as solid U.S. economic data helped
temper a sell-off triggered by political tumult in Washington.
The safe haven Swiss franc and Japanese yen pulled back from
the week's highs as risk aversion eased somewhat, with U.S.
equities edging higher on Thursday helped by strong economic
New applications for U.S. jobless benefits unexpectedly fell
last week and the number of Americans on unemployment benefits
tumbled to a 28-1/2-year low.
The Philadelphia Fed said its index for current manufacturing
activity in the mid-Atlantic region jumped to 38.8 in May from
22.0 in April.
The dollar last traded at 97.814 against the index of
six major peers, having climbing from Wednesday's trough at
97.333, its lowest level since Nov. 9.
The dollar index is down more than 1.4 percent so far this
week, putting it on track for its biggest weekly slide since
The greenback has been bruised this week by concerns that
political turmoil in Washington could delay efforts by U.S.
President Donald Trump to implement his economic stimulus plans.
Trump, striking a defiant tone on Thursday after days of
political tumult, denied colluding with Russia during his 2016
campaign or asking former FBI Director James Comey to drop a
probe into disgraced former national security advisor Mike
Against the yen, the dollar eased 0.1 percent to 111.39
. That was still well above Thursday's low of 110.24 yen,
the dollar's lowest level since late April.
Against the Swiss franc, the dollar held steady at 0.9797
, with the greenback having bounced from Thursday's
six-month low of 0.9759.
The focus will remain on the U.S. political turmoil, which
could continue to weigh on the dollar for now, analysts said.
"It hasn't gone away...and so the market will be swayed by
any related headlines," said Satoshi Okagawa, senior global
markets analyst for Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in
The Brazilian real nursed its losses after
slumping 8 percent on Thursday as allegations that President
Michel Temer condoned bribes to silence a key witness undermined
investor optimism in the prospects for Temer's ambitious
pension and labour reform agenda.
The real last stood at 3.3685 per U.S. dollar.
(Reporting by Masayuki Kitano; Editing by Eric Meijer)