The yen rose, adding to its best monthly gain in a year, as weaker-than-expected data for China and the U.S. underscored concerns that the world economy is stumbling.

Japan™s currency, often regarded by investors as a haven amid market turmoil, advanced for a second day against the dollar after a report Friday showed the U.S. economy expanded at a slower pace than forecast in the fourth quarter. Australia™s dollar traded 0.6 percent from a 5 1/2-year low as traders bet the Reserve Bank will cut interest rates on Tuesday after a gauge of China™s manufacturing sector unexpectedly signaled contraction. The New Zealand dollar held a three-day decline.

The yen gained 0.3 percent to 117.20 per dollar as of 8:33 a.m. in Tokyo from Jan. 30, when it added 0.7 percent. It rose 0.2 percent to 132.44 against the euro. The single currency advanced 0.1 percent to $1.1301.

The Aussie strengthened 0.1 percent to 77.72 U.S. cents. It reached 77.20 cents on Jan. 29, the weakest since July 2009. The New Zealand dollar was at 72.58 U.S. cents from 72.61.

China™s official purchasing managers™ index slid into contraction territory for the first time in more than two years, data over the weekend showed.

That followed a U.S. report Friday that showed gross domestic product rose an annualized 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter, trailing the 3 percent growth estimated by economists and falling from 5 percent in the three months ended September.

Source: Bloomberg