Forex Blog: Currency Trading News & Analysis.

January 27th 2009

Japan Moves Closer to Intervention

Despite backed by negative real interest rates, the Japanese Yen continues to grind upwards, threatening to break through significant psychological and technical barriers. From a monetary standpoint, the Bank of Japan is basically out of options with regard to limiting the currency's upward momentum. Its sole remaining tool is its $1 Trillion in foreign exchange reserves, which it could release directly into currency markets to depress the Yen. It has been four years since Japan last employed such a strategy, and it appears reluctant to dip into the reserves again for fear of offending the G8, which has discouraged such action. The BOJ is also reluctant to build its holdings of US Treasuries (which would be a collateral requirement of holding down the Yen), because bond prices have become inflated. However, loss of face may soon become the least of its concerns, as the economy slides deeper into recession. Unless the notoriously thrifty Japanese consumers can be impelled to action, the Bank may find it has no other choice but to spur the export sector via a cheaper Yen. The Guardian UK reports:

The economic malaise in the United States and Europe is affecting Japan and Tokyo must act to keep the economy afloat, Nakagawa said, a day after the country's central bank forecast that Japan would plunge into its deepest contraction in modern times.

Read More: Japan steps up warning on markets, BOJ gloomy

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Posted by Adam Kritzer | in Central Banks, Japanese Yen | No Comments »

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