Mrs Watanabe

Mrs Watanabe has a new beau. And his name is Mexico.

After an intense but torrid affair with the Brazilian real, a fling with the Australian dollar and the Turkish lira, Japan’s legion of retail investors – dubbed “Mrs Watanabe” because women mostly manage the household savings in Japan – are now piling into the Mexican peso. Continue reading »

Amid the worldwide emerging market sell-off, it’s understandable that a small data point like Philippines monthly exports might have failed to garner much attention.

But hidden in the detail, there’s an interesting statistic that hints at a broader trend that’s worth keeping an eye on – not just in Asia, but across the emerging world. Continue reading »

Mrs Watanabe just can’t get enough of Turkey these days.

Last year, Japan’s legion of retail investors (dubbed Mrs Watanabe because women mostly manage the household savings in Japan) poured more money into Turkish lira-denominated bonds than any other type of overseas currency bonds – overtaking even the Brazilian real and the Australian dollar. Continue reading »

Mrs Watanabe is back. The fabled Japanese housewife investor, burned by her love affair with the Brazilian real, appeared to have rediscovered a taste for the carry trade.

The object of her affection this time? The Turkish lira.

The appetite for Turkish and lira-linked assets from yield-hungry Japanese retail investors has grown by leaps and bounds since the start of the year. From just $136m in 2010, lira-denominated Uridashi bond issuance – as foreign-currency debt sold to Japanese retail investors is called – reached nearly $2bn in the first six months of this year. Continue reading »