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Will Japan intervene several times to save its currency?

usdjpy analysis, forex trading

This year has seen a dramatic decline in the value of the yen, with a decrease of approximately 10% relative to the U.S. dollar, marking it as the weakest among the major currencies of the G10 nations. During this period, the yen reached a 34-year low compared to the dollar, plummeting to 160.17. This significant dip preceded an unexpected surge in its value on Monday. Experts caution that to achieve currency stabilization, the Japanese government may be compelled to undertake several interventions, suggesting a fragile state for the yen in international markets.

On Monday, which was a holiday in Japan, the yen unexpectedly appreciated, leading to widespread speculation about potential government intervention. This movement was interpreted as a sign of decreasing patience among Japanese policymakers who are closely monitoring the persistent depreciation of the Japanese yen (JPY). This incident highlights the sensitivity of the yen to domestic and international economic shifts, reflecting broader concerns about its prolonged weakness.

Analysts are now debating the sustainability of continuous interventions by the Japanese government to support the yen. This discussion has gained urgency as the U.S. Federal Reserve signals its intent to maintain elevated interest rates for a more extended period. Higher U.S. rates make the dollar more appealing to investors, thereby applying additional downward pressure on the yen. Analysts emphasize the need for a strategic approach to interventions to counteract these market forces effectively.

Yusuke Miyairi from Nomura International predicts that without significant macroeconomic shifts, the yen is likely to revisit its low of 160 against the dollar. This outlook is based on current economic trends and the strength of the U.S. dollar, which continues to exert pressure on the yen. Such a scenario underscores the ongoing challenges faced by the Japanese currency in maintaining its value against a robust dollar.

Analysts at Citigroup forecast that the yen will oscillate between 155 and 160 against the dollar. They point to upcoming economic data releases in the U.S. that could indicate a weakening American economy, potentially affecting currency valuations. These predictions underscore the global interconnectedness of currencies and the impact of economic indicators on exchange rates, which could either alleviate or exacerbate the yen's current weakness.

While interventions by the Japanese government might provide short-term relief for the yen, Leah Traub from Lord Abbett & Co. argues that their effects are likely temporary. For more durable solutions, she suggests that the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Japan might need to consider reducing bond purchases or raising interest rates, strategies that could fundamentally strengthen the yen's position.

Tom Fitzpatrick of R.J. O’Brien & Associates cautions that interventions lacking robust political backing are likely to fail. He advises that this may be an opportune moment for Japanese investors to bolster their holdings in American fixed-income assets, betting on a sustained or strengthening U.S. dollar. This strategy could potentially deliver substantial returns if the dollar continues to perform strongly, providing a hedge against the weakening yen.

Analysts at ING suggest that the upcoming days may see an increase in the USD/JPY exchange rate, influenced by yield differentials and possibly a hawkish turn by the Fed. They anticipate that this scenario, which aligns with trends from September 2022, could lead to significant movements in currency markets, particularly affecting the yen.

Lastly, officials in Japan are likely hopeful that upcoming weak economic data from the U.S. could ease some of the pressures on the yen. Such developments, especially if the Bank of Japan remains reticent about incorporating the yen's value into its monetary policy decisions, could lead to a critical juncture where USD/JPY surpassing 157.0 might significantly increase the likelihood of government intervention.

usdjpy analysis, forex trading
USD/JPY daily chart, MetaTrader, 01.05.2024



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