TOKYO – The yen scraped back some losses against the US dollar on Tuesday, after the safe currency took a drubbing on news of the development of a coronavirus vaccine which raised optimism of a global economic recovery.
US drugmaker Pfizer Inc and German partner BioNTech SE said a large-scale clinical trial showed their vaccine was more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19.
The yen edged higher to 105.07 against the dollar, after suffering its biggest loss overnight since March. It fetched 76.42 against the Australian dollar, having lost more than 2 percent overnight.
“What’s important about the overnight movement is that it overturned the current trend of the US dollar falling, instead of the yen, when the market turns risk-on,” said Masafumi Yamamoto, chief currency strategist at Mizuho Securities.
“The yuan and euro have been rising against the dollar as equities jumped on Joe Biden’s election win… But the overnight movement flipped things back to the way it is when markets usually turn risk-on: US Treasury yields rise and the yen depreciates more than the dollar.”
The vaccine news comes as the global tally of COVID-19 infections reached 50.68 million on Monday, stoking worries of more lockdown measures across the globe.