The dollar fell below ¥105 in Tokyo trading on Friday for the first time in about 16 months, amid growing fears of a trade war between the United States and China.
After recouping some of the loss, the dollar stood at ¥105.02-02 at 5 p.m., still down from ¥105.67-67 at the same time on Thursday. The euro was at $1.2321-2321, down from $1.2374-2374, and at ¥129.40-41, down from ¥130.76-76.
The dollar came under increased selling pressure during New York trading Thursday after U.S. President Donald Trump earlier in the day signed an order for trade sanctions against China, over its alleged violation of U.S. intellectual property rights.
The greenback accelerated its fall versus the yen in early Tokyo trading on Friday, slipping below ¥104.70.
The U.S. currency briefly rebounded to around ¥105.10 later, supported by Japanese importers’ routine purchases, traders said.
In response to the Trump administration’s additional tariffs on steel and aluminum imports that took effect on Friday, the Chinese government announced retaliatory tariffs on pork and other items from the United States.
“As there is no prospect of an easing in the U.S.-China trade friction, it is difficult to buy the dollar for the yen aggressively,” an official at a foreign exchange margin trading service provider said.
The dollar was also pressured by increasing geopolitical concerns after Trump announced on Thursday the appointment of former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton — known for his hawkish diplomatic stances — as his national security adviser to replace Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, traders said.