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Yen rises as Japan finance minister talks down intervention

Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said the yen is not moving abruptly enough to necessitate intervention, pushing the currency higher against the dollar Feb. 15, Bloomberg News reported.

"From our perspective, the current situation doesn't warrant special intervention. The yen isn't rising or falling abruptly," Aso reportedly said in response to questions in parliament.

Aso did not specify what kind of intervention he was referring to, but his remarks helped push the yen up against the dollar to 106.63 as of 10:47 a.m. Tokyo time, Bloomberg said.

The statement came a day after Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga stressed the "extreme" importance of a stable currency market and confirmed that the government "will closely watch currency market moves with a sense of urgency."

Japan's top currency diplomat, Masatsugu Asakawa, also said Feb. 13 he was closely monitoring whether recent yen gains were speculative.

A higher yen weighs on exporter earnings and import prices, complicating the challenge for Japanese policy makers to nurture economic growth and raise inflation, which remains below the 2% target, Bloomberg said.