The Bank of Japan’s (BoJ) stimulus blitz raises the specter of currency wars as a rapidly weakening yen threatens the competitiveness of export-driven economies, say strategists.
“Whenever you have these kinds of disruptive moves by central banks, there’s always going to be fall out effects,” said Boris Schlossberg, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management.
Markets were caught off guard by the BoJ’s announcement on Friday that it would expand purchases of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and real estate investment trusts, extend the duration of its portfolio of Japanese government bonds (JGBs), and increase the pace of monetary base expansion.
The yen plunged nearly 3 percent against the U.S. dollar on Friday and extended its selloff on Monday, falling to a fresh-seven year low in early Asian trade. It last traded at 112.71.