September 7, 2018 / 5:39 AM / in 19 days

EM ASIA FX-Asian currencies flat in cautious trade, set for weekly losses

    * Asian currencies set to lose for the week
    * Chinese yuan, stocks pressured as tariffs loom
    * Indian rupee, Indonesian rupiah worst weekly performers

 (Adds detail on rupee, yuan and updates prices)
    By Ambar Warrick
    Sept 7 (Reuters) - Asian currencies were set to end lower
after a tumultuous week, while the prospect of additional U.S.
tariffs on Chinese goods kept trading muted on Friday.
    Following the expiry of the public comment period for
threatened tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods, the Trump
administration could begin to impose the tariffs at any moment,
although how long actual implementation would take is not yet
known. China has vowed to retaliate in kind.
    Market participants were also awaiting jobs data from the
United States later in the day for further clues to U.S.
monetary policy.
    An uptick in the dollar, fuelled by safe-haven
seeking participants, has weighed on regional currencies. The
greenback traded sideways for the day.
    "Asia ex Japan currencies are weak on two fronts. The three
Asian currencies with current account and fiscal deficits-
Indian rupee, the Indonesian rupiah and the Philippine peso 
remain sensitive to rising U.S. rates and emerging market
stress, especially the Turkish lira and the Argentinian peso,"
DBS said in a research note.
     A selloff in emerging markets, prompted by economic crises
in Argentina and Turkey, as well as recession in South Africa,
had battered Asian units through the week. The Indian rupee
 and the Indonesian rupiah were the worst
afflicted, and were set to lose more than 1 percent each for the
week. 
    The Indian rupee strengthened against the dollar on Friday
after the central bank likely intervened in order to stabilise
the falling currency, dealers said. The currency is the worst
performer amongst its peers this year, and has ended at record
lows for the past seven sessions.
    The Chinese yuan led losses among its Asian
peers, even after a stronger mid-point fixing by the People's
Bank of China. Chinese shares were also lower as concerns over
trade tariffs weighed.
    The yuan was set to lose about 0.16 percent for the week.

    ASIA FX POSITIONING
    Bearish bets on the Indian rupee and the Indonesian rupiah
reached multi-year highs over the last two weeks, a Reuters poll
showed. Worries over economic fundamentals in the two countries,
particularly their fiscal and current account deficits, have
prompted large outflows this year. 
    Bearish bets on the Philippine peso also rose. The
Philippines also has a current and fiscal account deficit, which
has prompted outflows.
    Bearish bets on the Singapore dollar remained largely
unchanged, while those in the Chinese yuan decreased marginally.
    
    The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against
the dollar at 0457 GMT.
    CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR
    
 Change on the day                                      
 Currency                     Latest bid  Previous day  Pct Move
 Japan yen                    110.570     110.74        +0.15
 Sing dlr                     1.374       1.3740        -0.03
 Taiwan dlr                   30.773      30.802        +0.09
 Korean won                   1123.300    1124          +0.06
 Baht                         32.790      32.79         +0.00
 Peso                         53.952      53.971        +0.04
 Rupiah                       14890.000   14885         -0.03
 Rupee                        71.740      71.99         +0.34
 Ringgit                      4.143       4.143         +0.00
 Yuan                         6.842       6.8267        -0.22
                                                        
 Change so far in 2018                                  
 Currency                     Latest bid  End 2017      Pct Move
 Japan yen                    110.570     112.67        +1.90
 Sing dlr                     1.374       1.3373        -2.70
 Taiwan dlr                   30.773      29.848        -3.01
 Korean won                   1123.300    1070.50       -4.70
 Baht                         32.790      32.58         -0.64
 Peso                         53.952      49.93         -7.45
 Rupiah                       14890.000   13565         -8.90
 Rupee                        71.740      63.87         -10.97
 Ringgit                      4.143       4.0440        -2.39
 Yuan                         6.842       6.5069        -4.89
 

 (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Eric
Meijer)
  
 
 
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