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Azumi Pledges ‘Decisive’ Acts Should Excessive Yen Moves Persist

Japanese Finance Minister Jun Azumi
Jun Azumi, Japan's finance minister. Photographer: Haruyoshi Yamaguchi/Bloomberg

Japanese Finance Minister Jun Azumi pledged to take “decisive” action on currencies after the yen climbed to its highest level since February against the dollar.

“We will continue to carefully monitor currency market moves with more caution,” Azumi told reporters in Tokyo today. “If these excessive moves continue, I think I must take decisive action” on the yen, he said.

The finance chief said it was “regrettable” that developments in Europe were weighing on Japanese stock prices and those movements didn’t reflect the strength of the world’s third-largest economy. His pledge to take “decisive” action was stronger than remarks he made yesterday, when he said he was watching movements in the foreign-currency market.

“It’s obvious that the recent one-sided moves don’t reflect the fundamentals of the Japanese economy,” Azumi said. Group of Seven members “have repeatedly confirmed that excessive currency moves are undesirable.”

The yen traded at 78.55 per dollar as of 9 a.m. in Tokyo, after touching 78.21 yesterday, the highest since Feb. 15. It has strengthened against all its 16 major counterparts this week.

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