Edition:
United Kingdom

Shreya Mariam Job

Australian shares pare gains on second virus wave concerns

19 Jun 2020

* Fears of second wave of coronavirus linger (Updates to close)

Australian shares down nearly 1% as dismal jobs data, virus relapse weigh

18 Jun 2020

* Investors fear spike in COVID-19 cases in China, U.S. states (Updates to close)

Australian shares rise on hopes for quick economic recovery

17 Jun 2020

June 17 Australian shares advanced on Wednesday as hopes for a swift global economic recovery rose after a record jump in U.S. retail sales, although fears of a second wave of coroanvirus cases capped gains.

Australian shares see best day in over 2 months on Fed support

16 Jun 2020

* NZ Q1 GDP expected to contract for first time in nine years

Australia shares end at 3-week low, NZ drops as virus worries weigh

15 Jun 2020

June 15 Australian shares closed at their lowest level in three weeks on Monday due to worries about a resurgence in COVID-19 cases across the world.

Australia's Westpac says 'faults of omission' allowed exploitation payments

04 Jun 2020

SYDNEY/BENGALURU Australia's Westpac Banking Corp said an internal investigation had concluded that child exploitation payments made through its system were the result of "faults of omission" and not intentional wrongdoing.

Philippines firm bids $535 million for Australia's Infigen Energy

03 Jun 2020

MELBOURNE/BANGALORE Philippine conglomerate Ayala Corp has made a bid worth A$777 million ($535 million) to buy Infigen Energy, pouncing on the Australian renewables company at a time when wind and solar firms are battling falling power prices.

Australia shares rise as economies ease pandemic curbs; Sino-U.S rift looms

25 May 2020

May 25 Australian shares rose on Monday as the global easing of pandemic-induced restrictions fuelled optimism of an economic recovery, though heightened tensions between the United States and China over a new Hong Kong security law remained in focus.

EM ASIA FX-Most Asian currencies firm on renewed Sino-U.S. trade talk optimism

08 May 2020

* Indonesian rupiah set to snap fourth weekly gain * Thai baht poised for a fifth weekly gain * S.Korean won hits strongest level in over 3 weeks (Adds text, updates prices) By Shreya Mariam Job May 8 Most Asian currencies strengthened on Friday as talks between U.S. and Chinese trade officials stoked hopes that recent tensions between the economic giants over the origin of the coronavirus outbreak could be easing. China's commerce ministry said top trade representatives of China and the United States held a phone call on Friday and agreed to strengthen macroeconomic and public health cooperation. Earlier this week, investor sentiment was frayed after Washington threatened to impose additional tariffs on Beijing in retaliation over the coronavirus outbreak. "The last thing global investors need right now is a one-two punch from trade war risks spiking amid the coronavirus pandemic," said Han Tan, market analyst at FXTM. Investors of trade-reliant economies cheered the news, with the South Korean won strengthening as much as 0.9% to hit its strongest level in more than three weeks, while the Indian rupee firmed 0.3%. The easing of lockdown measures in different parts of the world has also lifted sentiment and supported some riskier assets in the past few sessions. The Indonesian rupiah strengthened 0.6% after reports that the country's foreign exchange reserves rose by $6.9 billion in April to $127.88 billion, mainly due to the government's U.S.-dollar bond sale. The rupiah, however, is set to snap its fourth weekly gain to post a loss of about 0.4%. Investment flows are being diverted from the greenback to emerging market currencies on prospects that a trade deal would be implemented despite the coronavirus disruption. Meanwhile, the Thai baht firmed 0.4% after the country reported fewer number of fresh coronavirus cases, prompting Southeast Asia's second-largest economy to allow some businesses to re-emerge from the lockdown. "We have revised down our 2020 growth forecast from a decline of 6.8% to a decline of 9.0%, as we now expect tourism may not return until 4Q20," a note from Bank of America Global Research said. "After reopening, the economy is likely to run well below its capacity." The baht, which has so far been the worst performing currency in the region this year, is poised to post its fifth straight weekly gain. CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR Change on the day at 0710 GMT Currency Latest bid Previous Pct day Move Japan yen 106.360 106.27 -0.08 Sing dlr 1.413 1.4138 +0.05 Taiwan dlr 29.859 29.950 +0.30 Korean won 1219.900 1225 +0.42 Baht 32.280 32.42 +0.43 Peso 50.453 50.5 +0.09 Rupiah 14890.000 14980 +0.60 Rupee 75.560 75.76 +0.26 Ringgit 4.330 4.322 -0.18 Yuan 7.077 7.0850 +0.12 Change so far in 2020 Currency Latest bid End 2019 Pct Move Japan yen 106.360 108.61 +2.12 Sing dlr 1.413 1.3444 -4.86 Taiwan dlr 29.859 30.106 +0.83 Korean won 1219.900 1156.40 -5.21 Baht 32.280 29.91 -7.34 Peso 50.453 50.65 +0.39 Rupiah 14890.000 13880 -6.78 Rupee 75.560 71.38 -5.53 Ringgit 4.330 4.0890 -5.57 Yuan 7.077 6.9632 -1.60 (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

EM ASIA FX-South Korean won weakens on grim outlook; Philippine peso firms

07 May 2020

* China April exports unexpectedly rise * Philippines economy shrinks in Q1 * S.Korea likely to post current account deficit in April (Adds text, updates prices) By Shreya Mariam Job May 7 The South Korean won weakened on Thursday after a central bank official said the country is likely to record a current account deficit for the month of April, while the Philippine peso firmed despite a shock contraction in economic growth. The South Korean won lost as much as 0.6%. The country's current account surplus contracted from $6.37 billion in February to $6.23 billion in March. Investor sentiment was frayed by a central bank official's comment that it was highly likely that South Korea would swing to a current account deficit in April after posting a surplus for 11 consecutive months. The impact from the coronavirus has been reflected in a slew of grim economic data from around the world, with many analysts warning conditions could get worse before they get better. The Philippines economy unexpectedly shrank in the first quarter as the pandemic and tough containment measures brought domestic consumption and business activity to a grinding halt. However, the peso which has been one of the most resilient currencies in the region amid the health crisis, firmed 0.3%. The currency is one of the only two units in the region that have firmed so far this year. Investors hope that the trend of slowing inflation in the country leaves more room for the central bank to carry out more stimulus measures in a bid to boost the economy. "As bad as things were in 1Q, things are likely to get worse in 2Q," Noelan Arbis, economist at HSBC said in a note. "We expect continued easing from the BSP, with another 25bp rate cut and 200bp of RRR cuts to come, but timely fiscal stimulus is much needed," he added. Meanwhile, the Chinese yuan firmed marginally after data showed a surprise rise in the country's exports in April for the first time this year. Exports rose 3.5% for the month compared to a decline of 15.7% predicted by a Reuters poll. However, a collapse in new export orders and a double-digit fall in imports signalled more trouble ahead. CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR Change on the day at 0616 GMT Currency Latest bid Previous Pct day Move Japan yen 106.270 106.14 -0.12 Sing dlr 1.419 1.4206 +0.10 Taiwan dlr 29.928 29.910 -0.06 Korean won 1226.100 1222.1 -0.33 Baht 32.450 32.385 -0.20 Peso 50.540 50.67 +0.26 Yuan 7.093 7.1035 +0.15 Change so far in 2020 Currency Latest bid End 2019 Pct Move Japan yen 106.270 108.61 +2.20 Sing dlr 1.419 1.3444 -5.27 Taiwan dlr 29.928 30.106 +0.59 Korean won 1226.100 1156.40 -5.68 Baht 32.450 29.91 -7.83 Peso 50.540 50.65 +0.22 Rupiah 14980.000 13880 -7.34 Rupee 75.755 71.38 -5.78 Ringgit 4.322 4.0890 -5.39 Yuan 7.093 6.9632 -1.83 (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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