Yen Drops to 5-Month Lows as Stock Gains Spur Demand for Yield

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The Japanese yen declined to a five- month low against the dollar and the euro as stocks rallied on speculation the global financial crisis is easing, damping demand for the currency as a refuge.

The yen fell against all of the 16 most-actively traded currencies, sliding against New Zealand’s dollar to the lowest since November, on expectations Federal Reserve Governor Kevin Warsh will signal today credit markets are thawing. The euro rose to a one-week high against the dollar on optimism a European Central Bank official will indicate slower rate cuts.

“There’s a sense the global turmoil is easing, which is improving risk-taking appetite,” said Hideki Amikura, deputy general manager of foreign exchange in Tokyo at Nomura Trust and Banking Co., a unit of Japan’s largest brokerage. “This means the yen will likely weaken and currencies such as the euro and the pound will probably strengthen” in coming days, he said.

The yen dropped to 136.63 per euro at 2:16 p.m. in Tokyo, from 135.26 late on April 3 in New York. It touched 137.07, the lowest since Oct. 17. Japan’s currency reached 100.93 against the U.S. dollar, the weakest since Oct. 21, from 100.31 last week. The euro advanced for a third day against the dollar, climbing to $1.3558 from $1.3486.

From Bloomberg News.