The Yen is vulnerable. Yields on Japanese 2-year sovereign bonds are as low as -0.26%, inflation is persistently low (and seems likely to stay that way for a while) and GDP tilts from contraction to expansion and, in aggregate, barely grows. Currencies such as the US Dollar, the Pound Sterling, and even the Mexican Peso provide plenty of reasons to buy them over the Yen, and yet, the Japanese Yen holds sway. The reason? Global Stocks are underperforming.
Japanese corporations are basically cash machines, hoarding vast amounts of cash that they need to invest. The problem is that Japanese corporations’ default choice has always been buying the highly liquid Japanese sovereign bonds, despite their ridiculously low yields. If market sentiment is upbeat, if stocks perform well, and the global economy seems stable, Japanese corporations are willing to take the risk and store their cash in foreign assets, thus pushing the Yen lower. Continue reading "Japanese Yen Faces Summer Sale"