Japan Spent $19.7 Billion on September Currency Intervention

Japan spent a likely record daily amount to prop up the yen last week, leaving economists and investors wondering how many times the government could intervene again despite skepticism over the impact of such action, Bloomberg News reported. The Ministry of Finance disclosed Friday that it spent 2.84 trillion yen ($19.7 billion) in September to slow the yen’s slide in its first intervention to support the currency since 1998. Some private analysts had estimated the intervention at up to 3.6 trillion yen. The widely held view among market participants and economists is that the intervention only took place on Sept. 22 after the Bank of Japan’s stand-pat decision, though the data cover the whole month. More specific details on daily intervention in September and the currency pairs involved will be announced in early November. Despite an initial gain of more than 3.5% in the yen against the dollar, the surprise move hasn’t reversed the currency’s weakening trend amid a continued strengthening of the greenback. Volatility remains high in edgy global financial markets with the pound’s recent heavy slide adding to the jitters. Read more.