Currency peace: G20 gives BOJ a pass for deflation fight
All the talk of currency wars is mostly just that – talk. This week’s meeting of the Group of 20 nations at the International Monetary Fund was living proof. Despite speculation that emerging nations would redouble their criticism of extraordinarily low rates in advanced economies, the G20 ended up largely supporting the Bank of Japan’s new and bold stimulus efforts aimed at combating years of deflation.
Mr. currency wars himself, Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega, told reporters Japan’s monetary drive was understandable given its struggle with falling prices and stagnant wages, even if he called for close monitoring of its potential spillover effects.
Outgoing Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney said Japan’s action is consistent with the G20 communiqué that called for countries to refrain from competitive devaluation. Carney, the head of the G20’s Financial Stability Board, takes over the Bank of England in July. His comments echo recent remarks from Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen.
“It appears with Kuroda’s and Aso’s comments and the G20’s acceptance of their explanation on monetary policy that the path is clear for the BOJ to both continue easing or enact additional easing measures if needed,” said Brian Daingerfield, currency strategist, at RBS Securities in Stamford, Connecticut.