Japan signals determination to rig currency market

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Someday, maybe a century or two from now, mainstream financial journalists will ask finance and foreign ministers and central bankers whether all this currency intervention and market rigging ever encompasses gold and silver, why it is usually undertaken largely in secret and often through intermediaries, and whether those intermediaries gain the opportunity to trade for their own accounts on the basis of privileged information. Until then, the world may have to settle for The Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, The New York Times, Reuters, the Associated Press, Bloomberg News, and such.

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Japan Signals Determination on Yen

By Gordon Fairclough and Rebecca Blumenstein
The Wall Street Journal
Friday, September 24, 2010

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274870379380457551199402399096...

NEW YORK -- Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara said that Japan's government is determined to prevent further appreciation of the country's currency and raised the possibility of further government intervention to curb the yen's rise.

Mr. Maehara told The Wall Street Journal that the Japanese yen has "strengthened more than indicated by the actual strength of the Japanese economy." He said "speculative moves" had contributed to the currency's rise against the dollar.

"Any further appreciation of the yen should be stopped," Mr. Maehara said, in an interview on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meetings here.

... Dispatch continues below ...



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"Going forward, there may be a possibility for the Japanese government to show its very determined intent" to keep the currency from strengthening," said the foreign minister.

Mr. Maehara, in his first interview since taking over as Japan's foreign minister seven days ago, said that Japan "would maintain a very close coordination with the U.S. and European Union" in the event of future interventions in foreign-exchange markets. He said that he did not expect "joint intervention" involving other countries. But said that Tokyo would keep its economic partners informed of its actions.

The yen staged a sudden and short-lived price tumble in Asian trading Friday, but traders were at a loss to say if Japanese authorities had staged a "sneak attack" on the market or if jittery currency traders had jumped the gun.

The foreign exchange market has been on edge ever since Sept. 15, when Japan poured in yen-selling orders totalling an estimated 1.8 trillion yen to try and break the cycle of a strengthening local currency. Officials have become increasingly worried that the strong currency would harm the big exporters vital to Japan's economy.

On Friday, amid a quiet Japan market in the early afternoon, the dollar jumped nearly a full yen from 84.50 yen to 85.40 yen.

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