LONDON (AFP) - The dollar gave up early gains against the euro Wednesday and was trailing the single European currency in late trade on another round of dismal employment data from the United States. The euro was at 1.2608 dollars against $1.2556 on Tuesday after falling at one point to $1.2457, a three-month low. The dollar meanwhile edged up to 99.25 yen from 98.15 on Tuesday. The euro began the day on the back foot as investors, rattled by gloomy global economic prospects and crumbling stock prices, bought the dollar, seen as a refuge currency in times of trouble. In addition, the single currency suffered from widespread forecasts of another eurozone rate cut on Thursday by the European Central Bank. The ECB is expected to lower its benchmark interest rate by half a point to an all-time low of 1.50pc as it struggles to remedy a crippling recession in the 16-member eurozone. But the dollar later lost its appeal on a report that the US private sector shed a greater-than-expected 697,000 jobs in Feb as employers slashed payrolls to cope with the shrinking economy. The number of jobs lost, as compiled by the Automatic Data Processing group, accelerated from January and far exceeded the analyst consensus forecast for 630,000 as the prolonged recession intensified. The snapshot pointed to grim US Labor Department reports Friday on February job creation and unemployment. Also weighing on the dollar was news that the slide in the US services sector, as shown by the Institute of Supply Management, intensified in February. "Overall, it is clear the services sector is in just as much trouble as the factory sector," said analyst Paul Ashworth of Capital Economics. "No one is being spared this brutal recession." The yen's fall against the dollar came as Japan's opposition leader Ichiro Ozawa, seen as a potential future prime minister, dismissed calls to resign after a close aide was arrested in a fundraising scandal. "Worries are mounting over the European economies as well as the Japanese economy, where political turmoil is expected with a new scandal involving the opposition," said an analyst at FX Prime in Tokyo. The Hungarian forint plunged to a record low of 312.20 to the euro on Wednesday, then rallied to 308.50 against a background of controversy over the depth of strains in economies in Eastern Europe. The euro was at 1.2608 dollars against 1.2556 dollars reached late on Tuesday, at 125.13 yen (123.26), 0.8913 pounds (0.8937) and 1.4815 Swiss francs (1.4765). The dollar stood at 99.25 yen (98.15) and 1.1749 Swiss francs (1.1758). The pound was at 1.4146 dollars (1.4050). On the London Bullion Market, the price of gold fell to 908.50 dollars an ounce at the fixing from 913.75 dollars on Tuesday.