Business / Economy

Yen's depreciation 'not at excessive level,' economic policy minister says

Kyodo

Economic and fiscal policy minister Akira Amari said Friday any rapid move in foreign-exchange rates is undesirable for the economy, but added the recent sharp fall in the yen has not reached levels considered excessive.

“Rapid fluctuations affect (the economy), regardless of whether the yen rises or falls,” Amari told a news conference.

But he added, “I believe this has not yet reached levels of excessive yen weakness.” He noted that markets determine appropriate levels for each currency.

The yen fell to a 12-year low against the dollar at the mid-¥124 level on Thursday in New York amid expectations of a U.S. interest rate hike within the year.

A weaker yen generally benefits parts of the economy by boosting exports while bloating the profits of companies operating abroad in yen terms. But it also has downside effects, raising energy, food and other import costs and dampening consumer spending.

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