After the yen surged the most since 1998 amid a deepening sell-off in global stocks, Finance Minister Taro Aso criticized China’s recent intervention in financial markets.
“It’s not really the kind of action I would expect from authorities of a nation that aims to have an international currency,” Aso told reporters in Tokyo on Tuesday. “There’s concern in the market because what’s happened goes against common sense vis-a-vis international currencies,” he said, referring to halting trading in stocks and intervening in the currency market.
A slump in stocks and commodities has accelerated since China devalued its currency two weeks ago. For Japan, the yen’s surge could counter efforts to keep the economy on a recovery from two decades of stagnation.
“Rather than abrupt, I’d describe it as rough,” Aso said in reference to the yen’s jump overnight Monday.
Economy minister Akira Amari said the yen was bought as a safe asset, reflecting the evaluation of Japan’s economy as being “sound.”
Aso said the officials from the Group of Seven and Group of 20 nations are not at the stage of making a joint response to the moves in exchange rates and stock markets, but that they have been keeping in frequent contact.