Eisuke Sakikabara, alias Mr Yen, retired last month as
Japan's vice finance minister for international affairs. A
forthright bureaucrat who kept the market on its toes with his timely comments, his career path was not typical of MoF officials and included a period in academia. A fluent English-speaker, he talked to Steven Irvine shortly after he stepped down. The only thing he wouldn't discuss was the way the yen was heading - something of a paradox given that the currency was formerly his favourite subject.