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Bank of Japan pumps US$30b through 3-month dollar operation, largest amount since 2008
[TOKYO] The Bank of Japan pumped US$30.272 billion into markets on Tuesday with an 84-day dollar funding operation, its first after global central banks agreed this week to offer three-month credit to ease funding constraints amid the coronavirus crisis.
The takeup was the largest since the BOJ offered US$30.584 billion in an 84-day dollar funding operation on Dec 2, 2008, in the wake of the market turmoil triggered by the global financial crisis.
It also exceeded the US$17 billion offered by the Federal Reserve in its 84-day operation on Monday.
The BOJ's move came after the world's six major central banks took a joint step to provide more cash dollars on Sunday as a rout in financial market over the past week led to a scramble by banks and companies for dollar liquidity.
Yet, even after the Fed's emergency 100-basis-point rate cut over the weekend and the renewal of its quantitative easing program to increase cash in markets, there was little noticeable easing in the rush for dollar financing.
Funding constrains could ease gradually after big dollar injections from the BOJ and other central banks, said Yusuke Ikawa, Japan strategist at BNP Paribas.
"Today's results suggest that there are now abundant dollar cash at least among people who have access to the BOJ. The key point now is whether this money will spread to various companies and others that need them," he said.
In one possible sign of some easing in stress, the dollar/yen basis swap - the additional costs dollar borrowers need in short-term dollar/yen swaps - have eased to 91 basis points from high of 142 basis points on Monday.
The BOJ also supplied US$2.053 billion in a seven-day operation.
The BOJ has kept one-week dollar operation in place since the 2008 financial crisis. But in recent years, there had been very few takers of funds until last week.