May 13, 2013 / 8:46 AM / in 4 years

FOREX-Yen drops further as G7 avoids criticising Japan

* Yen hits fresh lows versus dollar, euro after G7 meeting

* More falls expected even as it recovers on profit-taking

* Euro falls as ECB’s Visco hints at negative deposit rate

* Dollar stays broadly firm after recent better U.S. data

By Jessica Mortimer

LONDON, May 13 (Reuters) - The yen suffered fresh losses on Monday after Group of Seven finance officials avoided direct criticism of Japan’s monetary policy, which has pushed its currency to four-year lows.

The euro also fell against a firmer dollar after European Central Bank policymaker Ignazio Visco said the central bank may opt for a negative deposit rate. This contrasted with expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve may soon taper its asset-buying monetary easing.

The yen hit 102.15 yen per dollar, its lowest since October 2008, on trading platform EBS as investors saw the G7 outcome as a green light to sell the currency.

It was last steady at 101.65 yen, with traders saying investors took profit from the dollar’s rise above 102 yen.

Analysts and traders expected the yen to fall further with many seeing 105 as a reasonable target. In the short term, it may struggle before a reported options barrier at 102.50.

“As long as there is no concern from the authorities about the rise of the yen it is a one-way bet and every pullback (in dollar/yen) will be met by buying interest,” said Niels Christensen, currency strategist at Nordea in Copenhagen.

“In the next six months it can easily move to 105 or 110, especially if data in the U.S. improves, as we expect, and the Fed slows its QE (quantitative easing) programme.”

The dollar soared past the 100 yen level last week on signs of a better U.S. labour market and data showing Japanese investors were buying more foreign assets.

The yen has lost 10 percent against its U.S. counterpart since the Bank of Japan unveiled aggressive monetary easing measures on April 4. It is down 15 percent so far this year.

Minori Uchida, chief FX analyst at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, said that after the dollar sailed easily past the April 2009 high of 101.45 yen on Friday there was little consensus on where the yen’s slide would stop.

Against a currency basket, the dollar was up 0.1 percent to 83.266, near Friday’s six-week high of 83.438.


The euro was down 0.2 percent at $1.2965 but stayed above Friday’s one-month low of $1.2935 on EBS. Against the yen it was down 0.25 percent at 101.66 yen, having earlier hit a three-year high of 132.39.

Nordea’s Christensen said Wednesday’s flash euro zone gross domestic product data could weigh on the euro by highlighting a fragile economy and the risk of more monetary easing.

The Australian dollar was down 0.4 percent at $0.9975. Having dropped below parity to hit an 11-month low of $0.9961 on Friday it is expected to fall further due to expectations of more interest rate cuts in Australia and concerns about slowing growth in China.

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