The Japanese Yen was little moved at 6-week highs of 104.34 against the US Dollar on Thursday. Investors remained cautious amid globally accelerating novel coronavirus infection rates, as France and Germany, Europe’s two-largest economies, were forced back into lockdown to contain a second wave of infections. On the data front, The Bank of Japan on Thursday trimmed its economic and price forecasts for the current fiscal year but offered a more upbeat view on the recovery outlook, signaling that it has delivered enough stimulus for the time being. Meantime, Retail sales plunged 8.7% year-on-year in September, posting the sharpest decline since May and the seventh consecutive month of falls in retail activity, while the Consumer Confidence Index increased to 8-month highs of 33.6 in October.
Japan Coincident Index
The index of coincident economic indicators in Japan, which consists of a range of data including factory output, employment, and retail sales, was at 79.2 in August, compared with the flash figure of 79.4 and a final 78.3 in July. This marked the highest reading since March, with the government upgrading the assessment for the index moved to “Halting to fall” from “Worsening”, the first time since May 2019, suggesting the economy stops contracting following the COVID-19 shock.