G-20 Signals Support for Japan Easing

But global finance chiefs draw the line at publicly advocating a weaker yen.

Global finance chiefs signaled Japan has scope to keep stimulating its stagnant economy as long as policy makers cease publicly advocating a sliding yen.

The message was delivered at weekend talks of finance ministers and central bankers from the Group of 20 in Moscow. While they pledged not “to target our exchange rates for competitive purposes,” Japan wasn’t singled out for allowing the yen to drop and won backing for its push to beat deflation.

Yen, Stocks

Finance Minister Taro Aso said today in parliament that the yen’s fall and gains in stocks are a result of monetary policy, declining to comment on foreign exchange. In the same parliamentary session, Abe said there’s no reason to make specific comments on the currency.

Appropriate Level

Japanese ruling-party lawmaker Kozo Yamamoto, who is close to Abe, in a Feb. 14 interview said that it would be “appropriate” for the yen to trade at about 95-100 to the dollar. Deputy Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said on Jan. 24 that it wouldn’t be a problem if the exchange rate reached 100.

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