June 8, 2018 / 7:05 AM / in 4 months

EM ASIA FX-Risk-off mood hits Indian rupee, S.Korean won most

    * Indian rupee weakens more than 0.5 pct
    * S.Korean won breaks longest winning run since Nov.
    * Sing dollar keeps an even keel

 (Adds text, updates prices)
    By Aaron Saldanha
    June 8 (Reuters) - Asian emerging market currencies fell
along with regional equities on Friday, as investors rebalanced
their portfolios before a busy week of central bank meetings and
the U.S.-North Korea summit.
    The European Central Bank, U.S. Federal Reserve and Bank of
Japan meet next week to review policy, while the U.S.-North
Korea summit takes place on Tuesday in Singapore. The Group of
Seven industralised nations will also hold a summit this
weekend.
    "We are seeing a bit of a risk-off tone, equity markets
across the board in Asia are down and that is filtering through
into Asian currencies," said Khoon Goh, head of Asia research
for ANZ.        
    Investors are looking out for the Federal Reserve's dot
plots and growth outlook at the meeting ending Wednesday and the
ECB is expected to debate whether to end its quantitative easing
programme later this year.
    Ahead of the G7 summit in Canada which starts later on
Friday, markets are on edge as leaders of the group appear set
to clash on trade issues.
    Among Asian currencies, the Singapore dollar
maintained a fairly even keel on Friday.    
    The Taiwan dollar fell a relatively modest 0.15
percent, while Indonesia's rupiah lost 0.36 percent.  
    The Chinese yuan weakened 0.18 percent on a day
when the People's Bank of China loosened the yuan mid-point
 for the first time in four sessions, setting it at
6.4003 to the U.S. dollar.
    Malaysia's ringgit weakened 0.18 percent, while the
country's benchmark equity index was trading as much as
as 0.7 percent lower.
    Thailand's baht eased 0.28 percent, in step with a
0.2 percent decline in the benchmark for Thai shares.
    The South Korean won's 0.5 percent loss made it
the second-biggest regional loser on Friday. Profit-taking
interrupted the currency's longest winning streak since
November, 2017.
        
    PHILIPPINE PESO
    The Philippine peso weakened 0.28 percent and the
Philippine benchmark equity index dropped as much as 1.1
percent in the wake of data reflecting weaker economic
fundamentals.
    The Philippines' trade deficit widened to a four-month high
in April on robust purchases of capital and consumer goods
abroad and as weak demand overseas dented exports.
    The country's worsening trade gap adds further pressure on
the peso, the region's second-worst performer so far this year. 
    
    INDIAN RUPEE
    India's rupee ended the week by losing 0.53
percent, compounding a 0.31 percent loss on Thursday. 
    The Reserve Bank of India hiked the key interest rate by
0.25 percent on Wednesday, but also raised the inflation
forecast for the second-half of fiscal 2018-19.
   "For INR, it still has the traditional headwinds of oil
prices; current elevated levels will continue to put upward
pressure on inflation and lead to near-term deterioration of the
current account," said ANZ's Goh.    
   "Despite the RBI hiking this week, there is a need for them
to move again...there will be some pressure on the Indian rupee
in the near term."
    
    The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against
the dollar at 0535 GMT.
    
    CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR
    
 Change on day at 0535 GMT                                      
  Currency                    Latest bid  Previous day  Pct Move
  Japan yen                  109.700            109.69     -0.01
  Sing dlr                   1.334              1.3336     -0.01
  Taiwan dlr                 29.784             29.740     -0.15
  Korean won                 1074.400             1069     -0.50
  Baht                       32.030              31.94     -0.28
  Peso                       52.637              52.49     -0.28
  Rupiah                     13915.000           13865     -0.36
  Rupee                      67.480              67.12     -0.53
  Ringgit                    3.982               3.975     -0.18
  Yuan                       6.404              6.3931     -0.18
 * Closed for market                                            
 holiday                                                
  Change so far in 2018                                         
  Currency                   Latest bid   End 2017      Pct Move
  Japan yen                  109.700            112.67     +2.71
  Sing dlr                   1.334              1.3373     +0.26
  Taiwan dlr                 29.784             29.848     +0.21
  Korean won                 1074.400          1070.50     -0.36
  Baht                       32.030              32.58     +1.72
  Peso                       52.637              49.93     -5.14
  Rupiah                     13915.000           13565     -2.52
  Rupee                      67.480              63.87     -5.35
  Ringgit                    3.982              4.0440     +1.56
  Yuan                       6.404              6.5069     +1.60
 
 (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru
Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
  
 
 
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