The euro’s weakness against the yen is “extreme” and is hurting local firms, Finance Minister Jun Azumi said, after the 17-nation currency tumbled to a decade-low.
“In order to halt the extreme strength in the yen and weakness in the euro, Europe should make the process of rescuing Greece more transparent to the markets,” Azumi said Tuesday.
The euro earlier reached ¥100.76, the weakest since June 2001, before reports that may indicate a slowdown in the European economy, spurring concern the region’s debt crisis is damping prospects of recovery. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. downgraded Tuesday its forecast for Japanese economic growth for this year and the next due to a global slowdown.
Azumi said he told Bank of France Gov. Christian Noyer during a Tokyo visit Monday that “the uncertainty surrounding Greek aid won’t disappear unless Europe implements Greece’s rescue measures as soon as possible.”
The yen’s climb against the euro will have a “huge impact” on Sony Corp.’s earnings, Hiroshi Kurihara, corporate treasurer of Japan’s largest exporter of consumer electronics, said last month.
Goldman Sachs reduced its economic growth forecast for Japan to 2.1 percent from 2.5 percent for the year starting next April, and to 0.1 percent from 0.2 percent for this fiscal year. With supply chains restored after the March disaster, “the Japanese economy will be strongly influenced by external demand conditions,” Naohiko Baba, chief Japan economist at Goldman, said Tuesday.
August wages fall
Japan’s average wages fell 0.6 percent in August from a year earlier to ¥273,580 for the third straight month, due mainly to a sharp decline in special pay, including summer bonuses, the labor ministry said Tuesday.
Scheduled wages lost 0.1 percent to ¥244,115, while nonscheduled pay such as overtime pay fell 2.2 percent to ¥17,684.
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