June 11, 2018 / 6:21 AM / 9 days ago

EM ASIA FX-Most Asian currencies climb ahead of US-North Korea summit

 (Adds text, updates prices)
    By Patturaja  Murugaboopathy 
    June 11 (Reuters) - Most emerging Asian currencies edged
higher on Monday ahead of a U.S.-North Korea summit that might
ease regional tensions, while traders also focus on key central
bank meetings later this week.
    U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong
Un will have an unprecedented meeting on Tuesday in Singapore,
possibly laying the groundwork for ending a nuclear stand-off
between the old foes.
    The South Korean won and the Indian rupee
 both about a quarter percent each, while the Singapore
dollar and Thai baht also advanced.
    "The market is probably a bit too positive, thinking
everything will go great," said Stephen Innes, head of
Asia-Pacific trading for Oanda in Singapore, referring to the
U.S.-North Korea summit. 
    "Risk-on environment is driving the currency markets in
    However, analysts expect regional currencies to trade more
cautiously with a raft of major central bank policy meetings
coming by Friday. 
    The Federal Reserve is expected to hike its interest rates
for the second time this year at its policy meeting on Tuesday
and Wednesday. Some analysts also believe the Fed will hint at
raising rates a total of four times during 2018.
    The European Central bank meets on Thursday 14, when it
could signal intentions to start unwinding its massive bond
purchasing programme. 
    Last week, the ECB's chief economist said the central bank
will debate whether to end bond purchases later this year, a
hawkish message which hit emerging markets.
    Andy Ji, currency strategist at Commonwealth Bank of
Australia in Singapore, expects Asian currencies "to end the
week lower on tweaks to the ECB's forward guidance". 
    Regional currencies' reaction to Trump's backing out of a
joint Group of Seven communique over the weekend, was relatively
muted on Monday.
    The Philippine peso was the biggest loser as
concerns over its current account deficit continue to hurt the
    On Friday, the Philippine statistics agency said the trade
deficit widened to a four-month high in April on robust imports 
of capital and consumer goods and as weak demand overseas dented
    The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against
the dollar at 0553 GMT.
      Change as of  0553 GMT                              
  Currency                         Latest  Previous    Pct
                                      bid       day   Move
  Japan yen                       109.790    109.53  -0.24
  Sing dlr                        1.334      1.3350  +0.09
  Taiwan dlr                      29.820     29.816  -0.01
  Korean won                      1073.30    1075.9  +0.24
  Baht                            32.030      32.06  +0.09
  Peso                            52.790       52.7  -0.17
  Rupee                           67.350      67.50  +0.22
  Ringgit                         3.987       3.987  +0.00
  Yuan                            6.407      6.4090  +0.03
  *Indonesian markets are closed                          
       this week for Eid Al-Fitr                     
  Change so far in 2018                                   
  Currency                        Latest   End 2017    Pct
                                  bid                 Move
  Japan yen                       109.790    112.67  +2.62
  Sing dlr                        1.334      1.3373  +0.26
  Taiwan dlr                      29.820     29.848  +0.09
  Korean won                      1073.30   1070.50  -0.26
  Baht                            32.030      32.58  +1.72
  Peso                            52.790      49.93  -5.42
  Rupiah                          13925.0     13565  -2.59
  Rupee                           67.350      63.87  -5.17
  Ringgit                         3.987      4.0440  +1.43
  Yuan                            6.407      6.5069  +1.56
 (Reporting by Patturaja Murugaboopathy in Bengaluru; Editing by
Richard Borsuk)
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