EMERGING MARKETS-Asian currencies, stocks hit as Trump widens app attack

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
EMERGING MARKETS-Asian currencies, stocks hit as Trump widens app attack

* Graphic: World FX rates http://tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh

* Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks https://tmsnrt.rs/3f2vwbA

* Yuan 's fall hits most Asian currencies

* Philippine stocks slip 1.2% as coronavirus cases surge

By Rashmi Ashok

Aug 7 (Reuters) - Tensions over a planned U.S. ban on major Chinese apps hurt most Asian markets on Friday, with Philippine stocks taking an added hit after a jump in coronavirus infections lifted the country's case load to the highest in Southeast Asia.

Malaysia's ringgit, often seen as a proxy for China's yuan, lost 0.3% MYR= while the South Korean won fell 0.4% KRW=KFTC as investors worried about further trade restrictions would be the end result of the tensions.

Citing security concerns, President Donald Trump issued executive orders on Thursday that will ban U.S. transactions with ByteDance, the Chinese owner of the popular video-sharing app TikTok, and Tencent 0700.HK , owner of the WeChat app, in 45 days time. sank Chinese markets in morning trade, and the rest of the region followed. The Singapore dollar SGD= , another trade- and China-sensitive currency, fell 0.3%.

Apart from the obvious fallout to Tencent and ByteDance, Washington DC's moves are sure to ratchet up geopolitical tensions with Beijing once again, after a relatively quiet couple of weeks, said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at OANDA.

"We would expect the sell-off to gather pace as the day goes on, with investors reducing risk into what could be a fraught U.S. session," he said.

The rising geopolitical tensions come at a time when a number of the region's developing economies are struggling with fresh coronavirus outbreaks.

Philippine equities .PSI fell as much as 1% after the country recorded a surge in infections late on Thursday, overtaking Indonesia as the worst hit country in Southeast Asia. The capital Manila has been placed in a fresh lockdown.

The spike in cases also followed dismal data on Thursday which showed gross domestic product plunged 16.5% in the second quarter.

Thailand's baht THB=TH also eased as it delayed plans for a "travel bubble" agreement with select countries with low infections, citing the second wave of cases. That will put pressure on its vital tourism industry and complicate efforts to revive a battered economy. Malaysian ringgit trimmed initial losses after data was released showing industrial production fell a marginal 0.4% in June from last year, far from the 10.4% fall forecast by analysts surveyed by Reuters. Indonesian rupiah IDR= eased, as the central bank bought 82.1 trillion rupiah ($5.63 billion) of government bonds in a private placement, the first transaction under a COVID-19 burden-sharing scheme with the government that some analysts say carries inflationary risks. In the Philippines, top index losers were Bank of the Philippine Islands BPI.PS down 3.66% and SM Investments Corp SM.PS down 2.85%

** Top losers on the Singapore STI .STI included Genting Singapore Ltd GENS.SI down 4.93% and Thai Beverage PCL TBEV.SI down 4%

** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields fell 1.6 basis points to 6.782%​​ while 3-year benchmark yields eased 0.2 basis points to 5.265%​​

Asia stock indexes and

currencies at 0401 GMT

COUNTRY

FX RIC

FX

FX

INDEX STOCK STOCK

DAILY YTD %

S S YTD

%

DAILY

%

%

Japan

JPY=

-0.07 +2.84 .N225 -0.93 -6.12 China

.SSEC -1.45 9.42

S>

India

INR=IN

0.00 -4.74 .NSEI -0.28 -8.22 Indonesia

IDR=

-0.14 -4.93 .JKSE -0.78 -18.4

4 Malaysia

MYR=

-0.21 -2.53 .KLSE -0.54 -0.56 Philippines PHP=

-0.03 +3.18 .PSI

-1.00 -25.2

3 S.Korea

.KS11 -0.11 6.48

C>

Singapore

SGD=

-0.28 -2.03 .STI

-1.12 -21.4

9 Taiwan

TWD=TP +0.40 +2.46 .TWII -0.87 6.70 Thailand

THB=TH -0.38 -4.17 .SETI -0.44 -15.9

8

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