The yen appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ¥88.75 level and was capped around the ¥89.70 level. The pair moved lower after it was reported Japanese gross domestic product data expanded 1.2% in the April - June period, better-than-expected and 4.8% on an annualized basis. These data render it likely Japan is leaving a technical recession but it is still highly probable that deflation will remain a problem over the next several business quarters. Today's GDP data were leaked by the Japanese trade minister. Bank of Japan Governor Shirakawa spoke about interest rates today saying If the continuation of low interest rates (in the U.S.) leads to a substantial rise in long-term interest rates by raising inflation expectations or by generating expectations for a weak dollar, this may give rise to another problem, namely that the fiscal burden increases and in turn the need for adjustments in the government's balance-sheet arises. He added balance sheet adjustments in the U.S. and European economies is a key issue in determining the outlook for the global economy. BoJ's Policy Board recently predicted core consumer prices will decline 1.5% in the year ending March 2010, decline 0.8% in the fiscal year ending March 2011, and decline 0.4% in the fiscal year ending March 2012. The central bank recently reported it will stop its purchase of corporate debt and commercial paper at the end of 2009. BoJ Policy Board's next interest rate decision is scheduled for 19 November. The Nikkei 225 stock index climbed 0.21% to close at ¥9,791.18. U.S. dollar offers are cited around the ¥94.75 level. The euro moved lower vis-à-vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the ¥133.20 level and was capped around the ¥134.30 level. The British pound moved higher vis-à-vis the yen as sterling tested offers around the ¥150.35 level while the Swiss franc moved lower vis-à-vis the yen and tested bids around the ¥88.25 level. In Chinese news, the U.S. dollar weakened vis-à-vis the Chinese yuan as the greenback closed at CNY 6.8210 in the over-the-counter market, down from CNY 6.8240. President Obama met in China with leaders there and does not appear to have obtained any official concessions from the government there on further liberalization of the yuan's exchange rate. China's main banking regulator today criticized U.S. monetary policy as having led to greater financial speculation. European official Alumnia said the Chinese government knows its yuan currency must appreciate.
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