Yen bulls never stood a chance this week as the usual pandemic recovery themes drove traders away from the safe haven currency, despite arguably net positive economic updates from Japan.
Japanese Headlines and Economic data
“The country’s real gross domestic product shrank 4.8% for the full 2020, according to the Cabinet Office — the first contraction since a 5.7% plunge seen in the global financial crisis days of 2009. But the 2020 result was significantly better than the International Monetary Fund’s prediction in October of a 5.3% drop.”
Inventories rise 1.1% m/m , Shipments down -1.1% m/m
“It may be difficult for inflation to reach 2% in 2021, 2022 and even 2023,” Kuroda said. “It’s not as if our efforts have had no effect. But we need to do more, given the fact inflation hasn’t reached 2% despite eight years (of easing),” he said.
“Ministry of Finance data showed on Wednesday exports rose 6.4% in January from a year earlier, roughly in line with a 6.6% increase seen by economists in a Reuters poll and following a 2.0% gain in December.”
“The au Jibun Bank Flash Japan Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) improved to 50.6 from a final 49.8 in January.”
“The survey showed manufacturers’ new export orders grew at their fastest pace since early 2018, returning to expansion for the first time in four moths.”
Japan records new strain; Singapore’s virus-secure hotel eyes business travelers – “Japan has seen more than 90 cases of a new Covid-19 strain as it tries to overcome a third wave of the pandemic”