Japan’s yen-selling intervention in the currency market rose to 4.7 trillion yen in March from the previous month amid speculation that the government has scaled back its aggressive intervention policy.
The amount hit a record 7.15 trillion yen in January before slipping to 3.34 trillion yen the following month.
In early March, U.S. Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan and Treasury Secretary John Snow warned against Japan’s continued efforts to lower the yen.
British newspaper the Times fueled speculation earlier this week, quoting unnamed sources at the Bank of Japan as saying that the unprecedented level of dollar purchases against the yen was officially over.
The Finance Ministry, which is in charge of Japan’s foreign-exchange policy, has officially denied that its stance has changed.
‘No change in policy’
Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said Wednesday that Japan’s policy of intervening in the currency market when necessary has not changed.
“The basic position of the Finance Ministry remains the same,” Tanigaki told a news conference.
“Foreign exchange rates should reflect economic fundamentals in a stable manner, and when that is the case things should be left to the market.
“But when that is not the case, and there are speculative movements, we will take necessary measures.”