EM ASIA FX-Most eke out gains as trade optimism buoys sentiment amid holiday lull

  • Reuters
  • Forex News
EM ASIA FX-Most eke out gains as trade optimism buoys sentiment amid holiday lull
Credit: © Reuters.

* Indonesian currency markets closed for a holiday

* S. Korea, China, Japan to help promote N.Korea-U.S. dialogue

* China considering more RRR cuts - Premier Li Keqiang

(Adds text, updates prices)

By Shreya Mariam Job

Dec 24 (Reuters) - Most Asian currencies eked out minor gains on Tuesday as optimism from the Sino-U.S. trade deal propped up investor sentiment in holiday-thinned trade.

With the "phase one" U.S.-China trade deal expected to be signed very shortly and with China providing clarity on the goods it will lower tariffs on, investors have been enjoying a pleasant reprieve from trade tensions that have rattled financial markets for over a year. players, however, are refraining from placing heavy bets ahead of the new year to gauge how far the partial trade agreement would go in resolving the Sino-U.S. conflict.

"Relative calm and reduced safe-haven demand reflect 'fat tail risks' ducked (for example, "Phase-1" U.S.-China deal and "Brexit")," a Mizuho bank note said on Monday.

"Risks are merely deferred, maybe dormant, but certainly not dead."

The South Korean won KRW=KFTC and the Taiwan dollar TWD= strengthened the most among Asian units.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Tuesday that South Korea, China, and Japan agreed to help promote North Korea-U.S. dialogue to end North Korea's nuclear programme at the trilateral summit on China.

The Taiwan dollar strengthened about 0.2% supported by plans disclosed on Monday to sell T$150 billion ($4.97 billion) in government bonds in the first quarter.

In China, Premier Li Keqiang said on Monday the government will consider rolling out more measures to lower financing costs for the real economy, including broad-based and "targeted" cuts in the reserve requirement ratio (RRR), relending and rediscounting. Chinese yuan CNY=CFXS was in the black but was largely flat.

Meanwhile, the currency of net oil importer India INR=IN was weighed down by higher oil prices.

Philippines onshore markets were closed for holiday, while the offshore peso stood unchanged after about two hours of trade.

Indonesian currency markets were closed for a holiday and the rupiah will resume trade on Thursday.

CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR Change on the day at 0509 GMT

Currency

Latest bid Previous day Pct Move Japan yen

109.370

109.39

+0.02 Sing dlr

1.356

1.3554

-0.04 Taiwan dlr

30.171

30.215

+0.15 Korean won

1162.800

1164.3

+0.13 Baht

30.150

30.16

+0.03 Peso

50.820

50.82

+0.00 Rupee

71.220

71.18

-0.06 Ringgit

4.138

4.141

+0.07 Yuan

7.010

7.0125

+0.04

Change so far in 2019

Currency

Latest bid End 2018

Pct Move Japan yen

109.370

109.56

+0.17 Sing dlr

1.356

1.3627

+0.50 Taiwan dlr

30.171

30.733

+1.86 Korean won

1162.800

1115.70

-4.05 Baht

30.150

32.55

+7.96 Peso

50.820

52.47

+3.25 Rupiah

13960.000 14375

+2.97 Rupee

71.220

69.77

-2.04 Ringgit

4.138

4.1300

-0.19 Yuan

7.010

6.8730

-1.95 ($1 = 30.1590 Taiwan dollars)

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