Bloomberg News

Japan Refrained From Yen Sale in Month to Oct. 27, MOF Says

October 31, 2011

Oct. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Japan refrained from selling yen from Sept. 29 to Oct. 27, according to government data that wouldn’t include any market intervention taking place today.

The Ministry of Finance released the regular month-end data today on its website. Finance Minister Jun Azumi said earlier that the government intervened today to weaken the yen after it reached a postwar high of 75.35 per dollar. That marked Japan’s third intervention operation in 2011 and the first since a 4.51 trillion yen ($57 billion) sale during August, the largest monthly amount since March 2004.

The yen plunged more than 4 percent against the dollar today, reaching as weak as 79.53. Amounts for today’s yen sales will be included in ministry data due at the end of November.

“I’ve repeatedly said that we’ll take bold action against speculative moves in the market,” Azumi told reporters today after the government acted unilaterally. “I’ll continue to intervene until I am satisfied.”

A previous yen record of 79.75 reached in April 1995 stood until March this year when a magnitude-9.0 earthquake struck Japan’s northeast, stoking speculation companies would repatriate overseas assets to pay for rebuilding. The currency jumped to 76.25 on March 17, prompting coordinated intervention by Group of Seven nations the next day.

Japan’s currency sale in August was unilateral, as was a 2.12 trillion yen operation in September 2010 that was the country’s first since 2004. Azumi said last week that conducting coordinated intervention in the currency market is a “difficult thing.”

--With assistance from Rocky Swift in Tokyo. Editor: Rocky Swift

To contact the reporters on this story: Monami Yui in Tokyo at myui1@bloomberg.net; Shigeki Nozawa in Tokyo at snozawa1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Rocky Swift at rswift5@bloomberg.net


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