The yen weakened to the 155 range against the U.S. dollar in London and New York on Wednesday, hitting a fresh 34-year low, amid expectations the Federal Reserve will keep interest rates elevated for longer than projected.

The Japanese currency stayed in the lower 155 range against the dollar through nearly the entire day in New York, after briefly falling below the 155 line in London for the first time since June 1990.

It hit 155.37 at its weakest point of the day in New York and was quoted at 5 p.m. at 155.28-38 per dollar, compared with 154.89-91 late Wednesday in Tokyo.

A financial data monitor in Tokyo on April 25, 2024, shows the Japanese yen trading in the 155 range to the U.S. dollar. (Kyodo)

Investors have been selling the yen for the dollar amid the wide interest rate differential between Japan and the United States, with their central banks pursuing ultraloose and tight monetary policies, respectively.

With recent stronger-than-expected economic data in the world's largest economy, senior Fed officials including its chair, Jerome Powell, have signaled that high inflation is likely to delay the start of anticipated cuts to its benchmark interest rate, which is currently at a 23-year high.

Although caution over a potential yen-buying intervention by Japanese authorities persisted, Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki's recent remarks that Japan is eyeing all options and will take appropriate action to counter excessive volatility in the market appeared to have had limited impact.

The Bank of Japan recently hiked interest rates for the first time in 17 years.

While the bank has signaled it will maintain an accommodative stance for the time being, Governor Kazuo Ueda said last week the BOJ will likely raise interest rates if underlying inflation continues to increase, stressing future decisions will be data dependent.

Related coverage:

Nikkei stock index surges over 2% on tech gains

Japan mulling all options, to take appropriate steps as yen falls

Nikkei ends down 2.7% as market rattled by Middle East tensions