Soaring iron ore futures as well

  • Fuelling the rises in local mining stocks, iron ore futures in China have jumped another 7.4 per cent
  • DUET shares soar after the company recommends a takeover offer from a Cheung Kong led consortium
  • NAB follows ANZ in hiking fixed-rate mortgage rates again, with investors being hit hardest
  • shares jump after the online retailer sets the scene for another upgrade to 2017 earnings
  • The pound slumps on reports PM Theresa May will call for a hard Brexit in a landmark speech tomorrow

“What’s amazing is that he hasn’t said anything about the yen,” Tatsuo Yamasaki, a former vice finance minister for international affairs, said in an interview. “Last year Yellen was saying that the dollar’s effective rate was up 20 per cent, and it was holding back exports, weighing on profits, and holding down inflation.”

The yen has weakened about 8 per cent since Trump’s win in November and is down about 26 per cent since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe came to power in late December 2012.

Trump has not shied away from bringing up foreign exchange in the past, including promising during the campaign to label China a currency manipulator as soon as he took office. He has also been vocal on trade, vowing to withdraw the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations and singling out China, Mexico and Japan at his press conference on Wednesday.

“We have hundreds of billions of dollars of losses on a yearly basis – hundreds of billions with China on trade and trade imbalance, with Japan, with Mexico, with just about everybody. We don’t make good deals anymore,” Trump said in New York last week.

Although Trump did comment on the yen and manipulation in 2015 during the primary, there has been little on the subject from him since that has been noticed by those in Japanese policy circles, like Yamasaki.