How Far Can the Yen Slide?
It's been a long time since the yen slid so precipitously against the dollar. So long, in fact, that investors are starting to wonder how much further it has to go.
Quite a ways, according to Amelia Bourdeau, director of foreign exchange at Westpac Institutional Bank.
Bourdeau notes that a Japanese official recently hinted that they would be comfortable with a significantly weaker yen. "When investors have a good trade - and this has been a great trade - and a government official comes out and says 'Hey, i'm OK with 100 on dollar-yen,' that gives all the license for investors to take it to that level."
Investors are still initiating long dollar-yen trades at 90, she told CNBC's Melissa Lee.
Kathy Lien, managing director at BK Asset Management, is slightly more guarded. The yen could almost certainly weaken to 95 against the dollar, she says, but "100 seems a little farfetched." Despite the officials' statements that Bourdeau mentioned, "I think it needs another catalyst," Lien says, pointing out that the Bank of Japan is poised to increase its quantitative easing in 2014, but hasn't said what it will do this year.
.Japan's territorial dispute with China has cut into the country's exports, Lien says, and while the weaker yen has helped with exports to other markets, it has only partially offset the effects of the dispute - which could lead to some stimulus action.
Lien says the way to play dollar-yen from current levels is to wait until momentum is building. Once the yen breaks through Friday's close of 91.25, she recommends entering trade with a stop at 90.00 and a target of 93.25.
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