Japan finance minister warns over yen’s rise
Japan’s finance minister on Tuesday warned over the yen’s rapid rise after the U.S. dollar plunged to a seven-month low against the unit on fears over China’s economy and global growth.
In Tokyo the greenback fetched 119.60 yen following the comments compared to 118.51 yen in New York where it fell at one stage to 116.18 yen, its lowest level since February. The U.S. dollar was above 124 yen last week.
The euro was stronger at 137.95 yen from 137.55 yen in U.S. trading, while it slipped to US$1.1538 against US$1.1606.
Japan’s Finance Minister Taro Aso on Tuesday cautioned over the yen’s rapid rise which he described as “rough,” and criticized China’s moves as “stirring fears” in global markets.
A rapid rise in the yen hurts major Japanese exporters such as Toyota and Sony by denting their competitiveness overseas and shrinking the value of repatriated profits.
Economy Minister Akira Amari called for a “cool-headed approach” but added that the shift into the yen “reflected the strength of Japan’s economic fundamentals.”
“The foundations of the global economy have not been shaken — a cool-headed approach is necessary,” he told reporters.
In other trading, Russia’s currency fell again after the euro passed the symbolic 80-ruble mark on Monday.
The 19-nation currency rose to 81.25 rubles on Tuesday, while the U.S. dollar was also up at 70.37 rubles.
The U.S. dollar mostly weakened against other Asia-Pacific currencies.
It slipped to 46.67 Philippine pesos from 46.82 pesos on Monday, to 1,195.53 South Korean won from 1,198.98 won, to SG$1.4065 from SG$1.4134, and to 35.64 Thai baht from 35.79 baht.
The greenback rose to 14,076.90 Indonesian rupiah from 14,032.00 rupiah and to 66.52 Indian rupees from 66.49 rupees.
The Australian dollar slipped to 72.06 U.S. cents from 72.30 cents, while the Chinese yuan fetched 18.59 yen against 18.91 yen.