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FOREX-Dollar hovers near 4-year high vs yen, aims at 100 mark
April 12, 2013 / 4:35 AM / 5 years ago

FOREX-Dollar hovers near 4-year high vs yen, aims at 100 mark

* Dollar dips vs yen, but not too far from 100 yen

* Greenback poised for biggest 2-week rise vs yen in 4 years

By Masayuki Kitano

SINGAPORE, April 12 (Reuters) - The dollar stayed within striking distance of 100 yen on Friday and was poised for its biggest two-week rise in four years, with the Bank of Japan’s radical stimulus seen likely to keep the yen under pressure.

The greenback has gained roughly 7 percent from 92.90 yen since the BOJ pledged last week to inject about $1.4 trillion into the Japanese economy to end decades of deflation and achieve its target of 2 percent inflation.

The dollar slipped 0.3 percent to 99.43 yen, after having hit a high of 99.95 yen on Thursday on trading platform EBS, its highest level versus the Japanese currency since April 2009.

In the past two weeks, the dollar has risen about 5.5 percent from the end of March, putting it on track for its biggest two-week percentage rise versus the yen in four years.

The greenback has come tantalisingly close to 100 yen this week, but its rise has been rebuffed by options-related offers, traders say.

“Personally, I feel that this market is playing the 99/100 range,” said a trader for a Japanese bank in Singapore.

Although there was talk of big stop-loss dollar bids at levels above 100.00 yen, the trader said he was sceptical that the dollar would go “flying off the block” even if that threshold is breached.

The euro eased 0.1 percent against the yen to 130.38 yen , pulling back a bit from a three-year high of 131.10 yen set on Thursday.

Against the dollar, the euro edged up 0.1 percent to $1.3111 .

Analysts have been quick to revise up their forecasts for dollar/yen and Societe Generale analysts are now targeting an eventual rise to 110, up from 103 previously.

David Rodriguez, strategist at DailyFX said it was only time before the 100 level is taken out.

“Recent market moves emphasise that traders should not fight the Bank of Japan,” he said in a client note.

The BOJ’s sweeping monetary stimulus has put the focus on whether Japanese investors will increase their overseas investment.

“What I tell you the theme is right now, is that there’s going to be a wall of money flooding out of Japan and it’s going to buy everything,” said Rob Ryan, a strategist for RBS in Singapore.

Although a few currencies such as the Australian dollar might be attractive, Ryan said he was sceptical that Japanese institutional investors would drastically increase their overall exposure to foreign exchange risk.

“If you look on a risk-adjusted basis...given the currency volatility, can you sit there and invest large amounts of your portfolio in unhedged bonds? The answer is no. Not while yields are offering marginal pick-up,” he said.

Japanese capital flows data released on Thursday showed no signs of any increase in Japanese capital outflows in the wake of the BOJ’s easing, or even since the start of the year.

The data showed that Japanese investors sold a net 1.145 trillion yen ($11.5 billion) worth of foreign bonds last week, the biggest selling in a year, as they cashed in gains at the start of Japan’s financial year.

Since the beginning of January, Japanese investors repatriated a total of 8.02 trillion yen, according to the capital flows data.

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