* Won at 4-mth high on offshore funds, foreign stock buying
* Taiwan dollar hits 3-mth high on inflows, exporters
* Ringgit higher after fuel subsides cut
(Adds comment, updates prices)
By Jongwoo Cheon
SINGAPORE, Sept 3 (Reuters) - The South Korean won and the
Taiwan dollar led gains among emerging Asian currencies on
Tuesday as solid factory data around the globe and a delay in a
possible U.S. strike on Syria boosted risk appetite.
The Malaysian ringgit touched a three-week high
after the country cut fuel subsides to reduce its fiscal
deficit, which had prompted capital outflows.
The won hit a four-month high on demand from
offshore funds. The Taiwan dollar also rose to its
highest in almost three months on foreign financial inflows and
Regional stocks gained on the back of strong manufacturing
activity in China and Europe.
Still, investors stayed cautious ahead of U.S. August jobs
data due on Friday, seeking clues to when the Federal Reserve
will start reducing its bond-buying programme.
"The won will keep rising as it breached important
resistance levels such as a 200-day moving average," said Jeong
My-young, Samsung Futures research head in Seoul.
"But gains in other Asian currencies are seen as only
technical rebounds after sharp falls. It is difficult to buy
some troubled currencies as their governments have not provided
strong solutions, and on the looming Fed decision to cut asset
purchases," Jeong added.
The embattled Indian rupee and Indonesian rupiah
were left out of the regional rallies reflecting
investors' lack of confidence.
Indonesia posted a record trade deficit in July, suggesting
policymakers will struggle to narrow the gaping current account
The won rose as much as 0.6 percent to 1,093.8 per dollar,
its strongest since May 9 as offshore funds chased it amid
continuous share-buying by foreign investors.
Offshore funds covered short-positions which they had built
up expecting the won to stay weaker than 1,100, traders said.
Some foreign investors added fresh bullish bets, they added.
Foreign exchange authorities have not been spotted
attempting to stem the won's strength, traders said, despite
growing concerns over intervention.
"I can see few signs of a retreat to 1,104. A key is U.S.
jobs data on Friday. But the won will not weaken much if the
number is much better than expectations," said a foreign bank
trader in Seoul.
The South Korean currency on Monday strengthened past a
200-day moving average, which was at 1,104.0 in the previous
The next level is seen at 1,083.0, its high on May 9,
Still, some offshore funds took profits, while custodian
banks bought dollars on dips, limiting the won's upside, traders
The Taiwan dollar jumped 0.7 percent to 29.705 to the
greenback, its strongest since June 7, on inflows from foreign
Exporters also chased the island's unit when it was weaker
than 29.760, traders said.
But the central bank was spotted buying the U.S. dollar at
29.700 to limit the Taiwan dollar's appreciation, traders added.
The currency has a 200-day moving average at 29.697, and has
been weaker than the average since early May.
The ringgit rose 0.5 percent to 3.2585 per dollar, its
strongest since Aug. 13 as offshore funds bought, and
government bond yields slipped on buying.
Late on Monday, Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak looked
to sidestep political opponents and temper market jitters by
cutting fuel subsidies to beef up the country's fiscal position,
which had spurred capital outflows.
But the Malaysian currency gave up some of gains with
immediate chart resistance at 3.2600 and on expectations of Fed
"I don't think the ringgit will break 3.25 even, unless Fed
tapering is postponed to December," said an Asian bank trader in
CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR
Change on the day at 0505 GMT
Currency Latest bid Previous day Pct Move
Japan yen 99.43 99.33 -0.10
Sing dlr 1.2723 1.2735 +0.09
Taiwan dlr 29.769 29.900 +0.44
Korean won 1096.15 1100.50 +0.40
Baht 31.99 32.07 +0.23
Peso 44.31 44.42 +0.26
Rupiah 10999.00 10970.00 -0.26
Rupee 66.75 66.00 -1.12
Ringgit 3.2600 3.2740 +0.43
Yuan 6.1204 6.1196 -0.01
Change so far in 2013
Currency Latest bid End prev year Pct Move
Japan yen 99.43 86.79 -12.71
Sing dlr 1.2723 1.2219 -3.96
Taiwan dlr 29.769 29.136 -2.13
Korean won 1096.15 1070.60 -2.33
Baht 31.99 30.61 -4.31
Peso 44.31 41.05 -7.35
Rupiah 10999.00 9630.00 -12.45
Rupee 66.75 54.99 -17.62
Ringgit 3.2600 3.0580 -6.20
Yuan 6.1204 6.2303 +1.80
(Additional reporting by KyoungHo Lee in SEOUL and Roger Tung
in TAIPEI; Editing by Eric Meijer)
- USA News
- Taiwan dollar