Yen’s Rapid Demise Spreads Unease Through Japan

The yen’s steepest decline in 20 months is prompting concern in Japan that the central bank’s support for a weaker currency may hurt consumers and companies.

Monetary authorities intervention to curb the slump is “possible,” according to Hirohisa Fujii, a former finance minister and member of the opposition party, after the currency’s steepest drop last month since January 2013. Some companies are suffering from the weaker yen, Nobuhide Minorikawa, Japan’s vice finance minister said this week, following comments from the nation’s economy minister on the risk of excessive gains or declines in the yen.

The chorus of dissent against the Bank of Japan’s accommodative monetary policy, which has seen 60 trillion yen ($553 billion) to 70 trillion yen committed to annual asset purchases, is growing louder, as consumer prices remain depressed and growth is anemic. The weaker yen puts Japan at risk of recession, Kazumasa Iwata, deputy governor of the central bank until 2008, warned last month.

Bloomberg

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