November 26, 2018 / 5:18 AM / 8 months ago

EM ASIA FX-Most Asian currencies gain; falling oil prices boost rupee, rupiah

 (Adds detail, context, updates prices)
    By Aby Jose Koilparambil
    Nov 26 (Reuters) - Most Asian currencies gained slightly in
thin trade on Monday as risk sentiment remained fragile ahead of
this week's G20 summit, with investors focused on developments
in Sino-U.S trade talks.
    U.S. President Donald trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping
will meet at the Nov. 30-Dec. 1 G20 summit in Buenos Aires, with
the tone of their discussions and announcements on trade the
market's major focus.
    OCBC Bank analysts said investors should watch for whether
China will be able to convince the United States to postpone the
tariff hike planned for January to later in the year to create
more room for negotiations. 
    India's rupee topped the gainers, firming as much
as 0.5 percent to a near three-month high of 70.310 against the
dollar, helped by substantial fall in crude oil prices on
    Oil prices steadied on Monday after plunging nearly 8
percent in the previous session, but remain under pressure with
Brent crude below $60 per barrel amid weak fundamentals and
struggling financial markets.
    The gains did little to make up for Friday's crude oil
selloff, dubbed 'Black Friday' by oil traders.
    "If no agreement is reached during the meeting between OPEC
and Russia next month, the prospect of (oil) oversupply could
carry through in 2019," Mizuho Bank analysts said in a note.
    Indonesia, a major net importer of oil, saw its rupiah
currency firming as much as 0.2 percent.
    The Chinese yuan and the Singapore dollar
gained by as much as 1 percent each while the Philippine peso
 and the Korean won edged by up to 0.2 percent. 
    The Thai baht, however, dipped as much as 0.1
    Morgan Stanley analysts said in a note the 2019 "growth
differential will swing back in favour of emerging markets"
because of slow growth in developed markets.
    The analysts said core inflation in emerging markets was
"well-anchored at relatively low levels", thanks to favourable
domestic policy. 
    "We view U.S. corporate credit as the key risk to watch
while trade tensions could be the most immediate risk to play
out pending the outcome of potential negotiations between the
U.S. and China," Morgan Stanley said. 
     The following table shows rates for Asian currencies
against the dollar at 0511 GMT.
 Currency                     Latest bid  Previous day  Pct Move
 Japan yen                    113.210     112.94        -0.24
 Sing dlr                     1.374       1.3750        +0.10
 Taiwan dlr                   30.872      30.902        +0.10
 Korean won                   1128.700    1130.5        +0.16
 Baht                         33.040      33.02         -0.06
 Peso                         52.370      52.45         +0.15
 Rupiah                       14490.000   14535         +0.31
 Rupee                        70.535      70.67         +0.19
 Ringgit                      4.191       4.192         +0.02
 Yuan                         6.943       6.9499        +0.11
 Change so far in 2018                                  
 Currency                     Latest bid  End 2017      Pct Move
 Japan yen                    113.210     112.67        -0.48
 Sing dlr                     1.374       1.3373        -2.64
 Taiwan dlr                   30.872      29.848        -3.32
 Korean won                   1128.700    1070.50       -5.16
 Baht                         33.040      32.58         -1.39
 Peso                         52.370      49.93         -4.66
 Rupiah                       14490.000   13565         -6.38
 Rupee                        70.535      63.87         -9.45
 Ringgit                      4.191       4.0440        -3.51
 Yuan                         6.943       6.5069        -6.28

 (Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru, editing by
Eric Meijer)
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