Japan Finance Minister Suzuki: To take decisive steps vs excessive yen moves

By Thomson Reuters Mar 26, 2024 | 10:43 PM

By Tetsushi Kajimoto

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki said on Wednesday he would not rule out any options but will take “decisive steps” against excessive currency moves, using the strongest expression in warning against the yen weakening.

The last time Suzuki used the words “decisive steps” was in autumn 2022 when Japan last intervened in the market to stem the yen weakness. Those words were used in prelude to currency intervention in the past.

Suzuki made the remarks shortly after the dollar spiked on strong U.S. data, nudging the Japanese yen to a 34-year low and into the zone that drew official market intervention in 2022.

The yen traded at 151.97 per dollar in the Asia session, down about 0.2% and weaker than 151.94 where Japanese authorities stepped in during October 2022 to buy the currency.

It hit the weakest level since the middle of 1990, around the time Japan’s asset bubble burst.

Suzuki said the government is closely watching market moves with a high sense of urgency following the yen’s fall.

(Reporting by Tetsushi Kajimoto; Editing by Kim Coghill and Lincoln Feast)