The Japanese yen staged a steep slide across the board in early New York trading on Thursday after the US data showed that initial jobless claims unexpectedly fell for the week. The yen plummeted to fresh multi-month lows against the US dollar, new multi-week lows against the European majors and commodity dollars.
The US Department of Labor said in a report that jobless claims fell to 432,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 454,000. The decrease came as a surprise to economists, who had expected jobless claims to edge up to 460,000 from the 452,000 originally reported for the previous week.
The yen plummeted to 92.79 against the greenback by 8:35 am ET and holding the level thereafter. This set the lowest level for the Japanese currency since September 8 and down by 1 percent from its Asian session high of 91.93. On the downside, the yen is likely to test support around the 93.3 level. The pair that closed yesterday’s deals at 92.43 is presently trading at 92.68.
Against the franc, the yen tumbled to a 9-week low of 90.03 by 9:10 am ET. This was down by more than 0.9 percent from yesterday’s close of 89.19. On the downside, the Japanese unit may find support around the 90.8 level. The pair is presently quoted at 90.0.
The yen also tumbled to fresh multi-week lows of 150.37 against the pound and 133.47 against the euro around 9:10 am ET and the next downside target levels are seen around the 151.75 and 134.6, respectively. The euro-yen and the pound-yen pairs were worth 132.54 and 148.64 each at yesterday’s close.
The house price index climbed 5.9% year-on-year in December, quicker than a 2.7% rise recorded in November- the Nationwide Building Society reported today. Economists had forecast 5.6% rise. On a monthly basis, prices were up 0.4% in December. It follows 0.5% increase in November.
The yen reached a 2-day low of 88.45 against the Canadian dollar by 9:25 am ET, compared to 87.61 hit late New York Wednesday. The yen is currently worth 88.4 per Canadian dollar and a further downtrend may push the domestic unit to breach the 88.6 support, which would set its lowest level in more than 4 months.
The yen also tumbled to a fresh 2-month low of 67.51 against the New Zealand dollar and near a 1-1/2 month low of 83.39 against the Australian dollar by 9:30 am ET. The Japanese currency that closed yesterday’s deals at 82.66 against the aussie and 66.75 against the kiwi is presently quoted at 83.26 and 67.46, respectively. On the downside, the yen may find support around the 69.8 against the NZ dollar and 83.6 against the aussie.