The Reserve Bank of Australia effectively benefited from its Japanese counterpart’s decision to stand pat on monetary policy last week. That helped the Australians pack a bigger punch when they lowered their benchmark interest rate by a quarter point Tuesday, weakening the local dollar. But there was a collateral impact as well: the yen appreciated to an 18-month high against the greenback, something that makes life tougher for BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda, who on Monday warned again about the risks of a strengthening currency.

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