The yen is on track to record its longest winning streak in more than six years, as haven assets remain popular despite a slight softening of worries about the post-US election global rally.
Concerns about the Trump administration’s chances of implementing its ambitious pro-business agenda of tax and regulation cuts prompted a sharp sell-off in stocks and the dollar earlier at the start of the week, with investors flocking to perceived havens including the yen and government bonds.
Markets were somewhat calmer on Thursday morning – the European stock markets are mixed but better than yesterday, while gold gave up some of its recent gains.
However, the yen continued to strengthen, while bond yields continued to slip. Although it was slightly below the intraday highs hit on Wednesday, at publication time the Japanese currency was still up 0.16 per cent for the day at 110.99 per dollar. That puts it on track for its eighth successive day of gains against the buck, its longest rally since February 2011.
The yen’s strength is frustrating news for many in the export-oriented economy, however. Data released on Wednesday showed that the currency’s recent weakness had helped boost the country’s trade surplus in February after it spent most of last year in deficit.