The Japanese yen fell against its major counterparts in the Asian session on Wednesday, as investors awaited minutes from the Federal Reserve's recent meeting for more clues on timeline for tapering asset purchases.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell said on Tuesday that the economic impact of the spike in the Delta variant of the virus cases is still not clear.

The pandemic is still casting a shadow on economic activity, although many companies have adapted their business models to the new world, Powell added.

Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari said that there is a lot of slack in the U.S. labour market and the timing of tapering will hinge on progress in labour market.

U.S. retail sales fell more than forecast in July as a surge in COVID-19 cases curbed spending.

Data from the Ministry of Finance showed that Japan posted a merchandise trade surplus of 441 billion yen in July.

That exceeded expectations for a surplus of 202.3 billion yen following the upwardly revised 384 billion yen surplus in June (originally 383.2 billion yen).

Data from the Cabinet Office showed that Japan core machine orders dropped a seasonally adjusted 1.5 percent on month in June - coming in at 852.4 billion yen.

That beat expectations for a decline of 2.8 percent on month following the 7.8 percent jump in May.

The yen depreciated to a 2-day low of 109.68 against the greenback, reversing from an early high of 109.48. The yen is likely to challenge support around the 112.00 level.

The yen dropped to 128.51 against the euro, 119.99 against the franc and 150.86 against the pound, after rising to a 5-1/2-month high of 128.22, 2-day high of 119.58 and a 4-week high of 150.28, respectively in early trades. The yen is seen finding support around 131.5 against the euro, 121.00 against the franc and 152.00 against the pound.

The yen eased off from early near a 7-month high of 79.25 against the aussie and a 6-1/2-month high of 75.21 against the kiwi and weakened to 79.73 and 76.17, respectively. The next possible support for the yen is seen around 82.00 against the aussie and 78.00 against the kiwi.

The yen slipped to 86.97 against the loonie, off its prior high of 86.61. The yen is poised to challenge support around the 88.00 mark.

Looking ahead, Eurozone final CPI for July and construction output for June are set for release in the European session.

Canada inflation data and U.S. building permits and housing starts, all for July, will be featured in the New York session.

The Fed minutes from the July 27-28 meeting are due at 2:00 pm ET.

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