Philippine peso leads gains; Asia FX up in August


Posted at Aug 29 2014 05:46 PM | Updated as of Aug 30 2014 01:46 AM

SINGAPORE - The Philippine peso led gains among emerging Asian currencies on Friday despite increasing tensions over Ukraine, with most regional units headed for monthly gains in August on hopes of more capital inflows due to the prospect of further European stimulus.

The peso closed local daily trade up 0.3 percent as the country posted a budget deficit of P1.8 billion ($41.3 million) in July, substantially narrower than the previous year's gap.

The peso ended at P43.59 against the US dollar.

For August, the Malaysian ringgit and the South Korean won led the monthly appreciation against the dollar for the region as offshore funds sought higher yields with stronger economic fundamentals.

The ringgit has risen 1.5 percent so far this month as strong economic growth fuelled expectations of another interest rate hike.

The won ended the month 1.4 percent higher in the local market, aided by stock inflows.

China's yuan and Thailand's baht both advanced 0.5 percent, while the Taiwan dollar rose 0.2 percent.

The Indonesian rupiah, however, bucked the trend, registering a 1 percent depreciation during the month due to nagging concerns over the country's current account and budget deficits.