May 13, 2019 / 5:38 AM / a month ago

EM ASIA FX-Asian currencies ease on Sino-U.S. trade talk stalemate

    * Chinese yuan falls to more than 4-mth low
    * S. Korean won eases to lowest since Jan 2017
    * Indian rupee slips, March industrial output falls 0.1% y/y

 (Adds text, updates prices)
    By Niyati Shetty
    May 13 (Reuters) - Emerging Asian currencies weakened on
Monday as risk sentiment dampened over an impasse in trade
negotiations that could end the bitter tariff war between the
United States and China.
    The Chinese yuan was among the worst performers,
slipping as much as 0.6% to 6.8580 per dollar, its lowest in
more than 4 months.
    Talks between the world's top economies came to a deadlock
on Sunday after Washington demanded promises of concrete changes
to Chinese law and Beijing said it would not swallow any "bitter
fruit" that harmed its interests.
    The long-drawn dispute escalated last week after the United
States increased the tariff rate to 25% from 10% on $200 billion
worth of Chinese imports after U.S. President Donald Trump said
Beijing "broke the deal" by reneging from earlier comments.
    "Investors will be on the lookout for any retaliatory moves
from China, amid background expectations for the renminbi
complex to weaken in reaction to weaker growth prospects," said
OCBC Bank in a note to clients. 
    While optimism over the outlook of the Chinese economy had
improved recently, uncertainties on the trade front could prompt
policymakers to take further measures to shore up policy easing.
    Data on China's April industrial output and retail sales are
due later this week.   
    The South Korean won eased as much as 0.7% to its
weakest since January 2017, and the Indonesian rupiah
weakened 0.5% to a more than 4-month low. 
    Elsewhere, the Thai baht and the Singapore dollar
 also eased against the greenback, while the Taiwan dollar
 and the Malaysian ringgit were marginally lower.
    Philippines financial markets were closed on Monday due to
mid-term senatorial elections, but the peso was quoted at
52.31 in offshore trading, 0.3% lower than Friday's levels.
    
    RUPEE SLIPS ON WEAK DATA
    India's rupee declined 0.4% to 70.21 a dollar as
government data showed the country's industrial output in March
contracted from a year earlier, indicating sluggish demand. 
    Figures on Friday showed output fall 0.1% from a year
earlier. Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast growth of 1.3%.

    Kotak Securities in a research note said that given the
fiscal constraints and slowing consumption, it sees limited
impetus to the economy and expects fiscal 2020 gross domestic
product growth to slow to 6.8% from 6.9% in fiscal 2019.
    
    The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against
the dollar at 0526 GMT.
    
    CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR
 Currency               Latest bid  Previous day  Pct Move
 Japan yen              109.740     109.94        +0.18
 Sing dlr               1.366       1.3626        -0.28
 Taiwan dlr             31.000      30.958        -0.14
 Korean won             1184.600    1177          -0.64
 Baht                   31.670      31.55         -0.38
 Peso                   52.310      52.148        -0.31
 Rupiah                 14385.000   14320         -0.45
 Rupee                  70.210      69.91         -0.43
 Ringgit                4.163       4.157         -0.14
 Yuan                   6.8580      6.8200        -0.55
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Currency               Latest bid  End 2018      Pct Move
 Japan yen              109.740     109.56        -0.16
 Sing dlr               1.366       1.3627        -0.27
 Taiwan dlr             31.000      30.733        -0.86
 Korean won             1184.600    1115.70       -5.82
 Baht                   31.670      32.55         +2.78
 Peso                   52.310      52.47         +0.31
 Rupiah                 14385.000   14375         -0.07
 Rupee                  70.210      69.77         -0.63
 Ringgit                4.163       4.1300        -0.79
 Yuan                   6.858       6.8730        +0.22
 
 (Reporting by Niyati Shetty in Bengaluru
Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
  
 
 
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