Falling Tokyo share prices depressed the yen in lacklustre Easter currency trade here Monday, April 16, dealers said. At 2:00 pm (0500 GMT), the Japanese currency was quoted at 124.49-53 to the dollar, down from 124.11-16 in New York and 124.23-26 in Tokyo late Friday.
"The yen was under selling pressure as investors sold the currency in the light of the falling stock market," said Hirokazu Node, a dealer at Sumitomo Mitsui Bank. The Tokyo Stock Exchange's Nikkei-225 average lost 153.99 points or 1.2 percent to close the morning session at 13,231.73. The headline index was trading at 13,288.35 around 2 pm.
In late morning yen buying sentiment received a short-lived boost from local reports that Princess Masako, wife of Crown Prince Naruhiko, was showing signs of pregnancy, dealers said. They said investors reacted instantly to the reports about Princess Masako in the absence of any other economic and financial news amid the Easter holiday in many financial markets.
"Aside from the Nikkei factor, investors found few incentives as overseas markets are closed today due to the Easter break," Node said. Investors expected few trading leads to emerge from a press conference later Tuesday by Bank of Japan governor Masaru Hayami, to follow the central bank's monthly economic report.
"Investors expect no policy change from Hayami after the BoJ returned to its zero interest rate policy in March," Node said.
The euro meanwhile bought $0.8888 around 2:00 pm, against $0.8882-87 in New York and $0.8906-09 in Tokyo late Friday. Against the yen, the euro was quoted at 110.60, from 110.70 in Tokyo Friday afternoon. —(AFP)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)