Yen gains in Asia after poor data shakes confidence
February 21, 2014, 12:06 am TWN
TOKYO -- Currency traders moved into the yen in Asia on Thursday as weak data from the U.S., Japan and China dented investor confidence in the state of the global economy.
The dollar sank to 101.87 yen in Tokyo, from 102.31 yen on Wednesday in New York where it won support from minutes of the Federal Reserve's January meeting, which showed some policymakers pushed to raise interest rates.
The euro weakened to 140.18 yen from 140.51 yen in US trade, while it rose to US$1.3780 from US$1.3734.
"The market is generally in a risk-off mood," Minori Uchida, chief currency analyst at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, told Dow Jones Newswires.
Investors tend to buy the yen, seen as a so-called safe haven currency, in times of uncertainty or turmoil.
On Wednesday, fresh US data showed that new home construction and building permits plunged more than expected in January amid severe winter weather in large parts of the country.
The dollar rose against other Asia-Pacific currencies.
It edged higher to 44.70 Philippine pesos from 44.65 pesos the previous day, to 32.58 Thai baht from 32.56 baht, to SG$1.2645 from SG$1.2627, and to 1,072.30 South Korean won from 1,067.85 won.
The greenback also firmed to 62.29 Indian rupees from 62.22 rupees and to 11,790 Indonesian rupiah from 11,788 rupiah.
The Australian dollar weakened to 89.52 U.S. cents from 90.10 cents, while the Chinese yuan fetched 16.72 yen against 16.80 yen.