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BOJ says monetary base soars to record on new QE scheme

The Bank of Japan building is pictured in Tokyo, March 29, 2013. REUTERS/Yuya Shino
The Bank of Japan building is pictured in Tokyo, March 29, 2013. REUTERS/Yuya Shino

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's monetary base soared to a record in April, the Bank of Japan said on Thursday, as the central bank's more aggressive quantitative easing program boosts the amount of money flowing through the economy.

The BOJ unveiled a radical overhaul of monetary policy on April 4 by shifting its policy target to the monetary base from short-term interest rates.

The central bank aims to roughly double the monetary base over two years by increasing purchases of government debt to end 15 years of nagging deflation. The monetary base is currency in circulation and commercial banks' deposits at the BOJ.

In April, the average monetary base was a record 149.6 trillion yen ($1.54 trillion), up 23.1 percent from the same period a year earlier, the BOJ said in a statement.

At the end of April, the monetary base stood at 155.3 trillion yen, which was also a record high, central bank data showed.

Under its new quantitative and qualitative monetary easing, the BOJ expects the monetary base to reach 200 trillion yen at the end of this year and then rise to 270 trillion yen at the end of 2014. ($1 = 97.3450 Japanese yen)

(Reporting by Stanley White; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)

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