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Tuesday 23rd of June 2009
September 27, 2006

Yen weakens on finance minister comments


by Elaine Frei

Comments from new Japanese finance minster Koji Omi sent the yen lower in relation to the euro on Wednesday. He proclaimed himself “not an expert” on foreign exchange markets but allowed that currency rates should “reflect economic fundamentals”. He also said that the markets should not move based on his comments, but that did not stop them from doing so. The euro was 0.5 percent higher versus the yen, to ¥149.20 at mid-afternoon in New York, while the US dollar gained 0.3 percent on the Japanese currency to ¥117.40.

The greenback was down, however, against the euro. New data showed that while new home sales in the US were up more than had been expected, durable goods orders were down more than they were predicted to be. Durable goods orders were 0.5 percent lower in August, when they had been expected to be 0.5 percent higher. The US currency dropped 0.1 percent to $1.2700 versus the shared currency.

Sterling was also weaker on Wednesday in relation to both the euro and the dollar after remarks from a member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee as well as on a downward revision of economic growth in the UK in the second quarter from 0.8 percent to 0.7 percent. The UK currency fell 0.4 percent versus the dollar to $1.8875, while it dropped 0.5 percent to £0.6730 against the euro.

The Chinese renminbi hit another new high since its revaluation last year, trading at Rmb7.9020. The Chinese currency has added 0.5 percent since September 18.

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