Asian currencies fell for a third week amid concern the yen’s slump will trigger a currency war, and after the European Central Bank (ECB) said the euro’s strength could hamper an economic recovery.
India’s rupee completed its worst week this year after the government predicted the slowest economic growth in a decade. The New Taiwan dollar slid to a five-month low and South Korea’s won pared a weekly gain after the yen’s plunge to the weakest level since May 2010 fueled speculation policymakers will rein in exchange rates to support exports.
The NT dollar dropped 0.3 percent to NT$29.75 against its US counterpart from a week ago, according to prices from Taipei Forex Inc. It retreated 0.4 percent on Friday and closed the weakest since Sept. 11. Local stock and bond markets were shut starting Thursday ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday.
The rupee weakened 0.6 percent this week to 53.5050 per US dollar in Mumbai, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The baht was little changed at 29.79, after erasing a weekly gain. The Bloomberg-JPMorgan Asia Dollar Index, which tracks the region’s 10 most-active currencies excluding the yen, dropped 0.1 percent, a third weekly decline.
The won fell 0.7 percent on Friday, the most in a week, to 1,095.80 per US dollar. That pared its appreciation in the week to 0.1 percent. Foreign funds pulled 1.9 trillion won (US$1.7 billion) from its stock market last month, the most since May.
China’s yuan fell for a third week, losing 0.09 percent from Feb. 1, to 6.2325 per US dollar, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System. It touched an eight-week low of 6.2417 earlier. Local financial markets close from tomorrow for a week-long Lunar New Year holiday.
Elsewhere, Malaysia’s ringgit rose 0.2 percent to 3.1005 per US dollar from Jan. 31, Indonesia’s rupiah gained 0.5 percent this week to 9,667 and the Philippine peso was up 0.1 percent at 40.677.