Yen falls to fresh 24-year low vs. dollar on Fed's official remarks

The Japanese yen fell to a fresh 24-year low in the 139 zone against the U.S. dollar in Tokyo on Thursday as hawkish remarks by a Federal Reserve official fueled speculation of a widening interest rate gap between Japan and the United States.

The Japanese currency briefly weakened to the upper 139 level against the dollar, its lowest level since September 1998, after hitting 139.38 on July 14.

Tokyo stocks ended lower as investor sentiment was hurt by continuous falls in U.S. shares since late last week, and an overnight drop in European shares.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended down 430.06 points, or 1.53 percent, from Wednesday at 27,661.47. The broader Topix index finished 27.67 points, or 1.41 percent, lower at 1,935.49.

On the top-tier Prime Market, decliners were led by marine transportation, electric appliance, and oil and coal product issues.

© Kyodo News