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Aust dollar closes weaker

The Australian dollar has ended the local trading day a touch lower after market players were disappointed by a speech from US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke.

The Australian dollar was at 105.48 US cents at the end of the local trading day on Tuesday, down slightly from 105.56 US cents on Monday.

The Australian dollar opened the local session at 0700 AEDT at 105.64 US cents, ahead of a speech from Dr Bernanke.

The market was hoping to hear more from Dr Bernanke about the US central bank's quantitative easing, or economic stimulus, program.

However, investors came away from the Federal Reserve chairman's remarks with little new information.

"It turned out to be a bit of a fizzer," ForexCT head of research Steven Dooley said.

"There were expectations that we might see a big move today in the markets but in actuality we didn't see much at all."

With little else to offer direction, the Australian dollar was left stuck in a tight range for the rest of the day.

Despite ending slightly weaker, Mr Dooley said there continued to be good support for the Australian dollar.

Mr Dooley said the currency could potentially break through 106 US cents this week on the back of strong November jobs data due on Thursday and Chinese economic growth figures to come out on Friday.

"The Aussie dollar has definitely got an upward bias to it," Mr Dooley said.

The Australian dollar rose to 106.00 US cents last week, reaching near four-month highs amid a stronger gold price, a rally on equity markets and positive comments from the European Central Bank.

Meanwhile, the yen was higher on Tuesday after a Japanese government minister said a stronger yen was adversely impacting on the livelihoods of the Japanese people.

At 1700 AEDT, the Australian dollar was at 93.87 yen, down 0.8 per cent from 94.59 yen previously.

The local unit ended the local session at 78.99 euro cents, up from 78.85 euro cents on Monday.

Meanwhile, the bond market closed firmer.

The March 10-year bond futures contract finished the local session at 96.575 (implying a yield of 3.425 per cent), up from Monday's local close of 96.560 (3.440 per cent).

The March three-year bond futures contract was at 97.190 (2.810 per cent), up from 97.160 (2.840 per cent) previously.

Bonds opened on a positive note, having matched the move on US Treasuries during the overnight offshore session, before drifting along in directionless trade during the local session.

"It has been a really quiet day," Nomura Australia rates strategist Martin Whetton said.