BOJ’s Iwata says no need to buy U.S. Treasury debt

Bank of Japan's new Deputy Governor Iwata speaks at a news conference at the BOJ headquarters in Tokyo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Kikuo Iwata said on Thursday there is no need to buy U.S. Treasury debt now because the BOJ is able to achieve sufficient monetary easing through purchases of Japanese government bonds.

“We can achieve our 2 percent inflation target and seek an eventual exit from our quantitative easing program without buying U.S. Treasury debt,” Iwata told parliament.

“Buying U.S. Treasury debt unnecessarily would be interpreted as currency intervention,” which falls under the jurisdiction of the finance ministry, he said.

Iwata made the comments when asked by an opposition party lawmaker whether the BOJ, having dried up market liquidity through its massive purchases of Japanese government bonds, would embark on other steps such as buying U.S. Treasury debt.

(Reporting by Leika Kihara; Editing by Chris Gallagher)