Yen Weakens as Russia Eases Ukraine Tension

The yen dropped from a three-week high as concern eased about tensions in Ukraine after reports last week that Russia’s warplanes ended drills and the nation is seeking to mediate between Kiev and rebel forces.

The euro fell toward the lowest versus the dollar since November as data showed investors held the largest positions in two years betting on a decline in the currency. The dollar held gains from last week against most Group of 10 currencies before a report this week economists said will show retail sales grew for a sixth month in July. Indonesia’s rupiah rose on bets judges will dismiss a challenge to incoming president Joko Widodo’s election victory. Norway’s krone advanced.

“Market sentiment seemed to have improved and that reduced demand for safe-haven currencies such as the yen,” said Jane Foley, a senior foreign-exchange strategist at Rabobank International in London. “Things appear to have calmed down a bit. That said, there is still some fragility in sentiment. My sense is that the market will bolt back into the yen on any negative new development about the geopolitical tension.”

The yen weakened 0.1 percent to 102.14 per dollar as of 8:18 a.m. New York time, after reaching 101.51 on Aug. 8, the strongest since July 24. The euro depreciated 0.2 percent to $1.3390 after reaching $1.3333 on Aug. 6, its weakest level since Nov. 8. Japan’s currency strengthened less than 0.1 percent to 136.76 versus the euro.

The ForexSQ Dollar Spot Index (MXAP), which tracks the greenback against 10 developed-market peers, was little changed at 1,021.67, holding four straight weeks of gains.

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