Sun, Aug 18, 2013 - Page 15 News List

Asian currencies dive on US fears

TRYING TIMES AHEAD:Regional central banks are under immense pressure to shore up currencies as the end of US stimulus looms, analyst Andy Ji said


Elsewhere in Asia, the Philippine peso dropped 0.3 percent to 43.63 per US dollar this week, South Korea’s won lost 0.1 percent to 1,113.59 and Thailand’s baht fell 0.1 percent to 31.27. China’s yuan rose 0.2 percent to 6.1130 and reached a 19-year high of 6.1090 on Friday.

The US dollar rallied against the majority of its 16 most-traded peers as economic data exceeding forecasts spurred speculation that the US Federal Reserve will trim the pace of its bond purchases as early as next month.

The Bloomberg US Dollar Index rebounded from a decline last week as jobless claims decreased to their lowest level since 2007. The euro gained versus the yen as a report showed the 17-nation region pulled out of recession.

The index, which tracks the greenback against 10 other major currencies, gained 0.5 percent to 1,022.06 this week in New York.

The US tender gained 0.1 percent to US$1.3329 per euro and climbed 1.4 percent to ¥97.53, the biggest gain since July 19. Japan’s currency dropped 1.3 percent to ¥130 per euro.

The euro rallied 5.1 percent this year, the most among 10 developed market currencies tracked by Bloomberg Correlation-Weighted Indexes, while the US dollar rose the second-most with 3.9 percent. The Australian dollar dropped 9.4 percent and the yen slipped 8.8 percent to lead decliners.

Britain’s pound strengthened 3.1 percent in the past month versus the US dollar as reports showed purchasing managers’ indices of manufacturing, services and construction all improved last month, while house prices increased and jobless claims fell twice as fast as predicted. The British economy expanded by 0.6 percent in the second quarter.

The UK currency rose 0.9 percent to US$1.5629 after touching US$1.5657 on Friday, the strongest level since June 19. Sterling gained 0.9 percent to £0.8528 per euro.

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