The Japanese currency traded higher against other major opponents during early European trading on Monday. The yen climbed to a new 15-year high against the US dollar, 20- 1/2 -month high versus the pound and a 6-week high versus the Swiss franc.
Finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of 20 nations met over the weekend in Gyeongju, South Korea.
The G-20 meeting adopted a joint statement vowing to avoid “competitive devaluation” of their currencies.
But the statement lacks specifics strong enough to alter the tide of the currency market. This renewed market speculation that the greenback will continue to weaken, given also that the Federal Reserve will further its monetary easing steps early next month.
Most Asian stocks rose today as Japan’s exports climbed more than expected and the weekend meeting of G-20 finance chiefs produced a historic reform of giving emerging economies more of a say in the International Monetary Fund’s operation.
But the Japanese stocks closed lower today on strong yen. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was 25.55 points down or 0.27% to close at 9,401.16.
Japan posted a merchandise trade surplus of 797.0 billion yen in September, the Ministry of Finance said today, up 54.0 percent on year.
That was sharply higher than analyst expectations for a surplus of 710.0 billion yen following the revised 86.0 billion yen surplus in August.
At 4:00 am ET, the yen jumped to a new 15-year high of 80.42 versus the greenback, compared to last week’s close of 81.36. As of now, the yen is trading at 80.61 per dollar.
The yen that touched a low of 83.54 against the Swiss franc at around 3:00 am ET, edged up thereafter and hit a 6-week high of 82.94 by about 4:30 am ET. The pair that closed last Friday’s trading at 83.23, is now worth 83.30.
Against its British counterpart, the Japanese currency surged up to a 20- 1/2 -month high of 126.49 as of 4:00 am ET from previous session’s low of 127.79. At present, the pair is trading at 126.92.
The yen also showed strength against the euro in today’s early European trading from Asian session’s 4-day low of 113.81. At present, the pair is trading near 113.22, which mat be compared to last week’s close of 113.44.
Looking ahead, the U.S. existing home sales report for September is due at 10:00 am ET today.