The Philippine peso strengthened 0.5% and was set to post its best week since Feb. 24
Southeast Asian currencies and stocks rose on Friday after multi-billion dollar lifelines for troubled banks eased stress on the global financial system and shored up investor hopes that the U.S. Federal Reserve could ease its rate-hike campaign.
The Philippine peso strengthened 0.5% and was set to post its best week since Feb. 24.
The Thai baht and Indonesia’s rupiah were on track for their sharpest weekly gains since Jan. 13. “Swift actions by regulators and banks to stem the market turmoil could have contributed to market stability in Asia,” analysts at Maybank said in a note.
The U.S. dollar index eased 0.3% after major U.S. banks injected $30 billion in deposits into First Republic Bank, to rescue the lender caught up in a widening crisis triggered by the collapse of two other mid-size U.S. banks over the past week.
Across the region, stock markets tracked Wall Street’s gains overnight, but were set for weekly losses given the recent rout in the global banking sector.
Malaysian shares gained as much as 1.5%, heading for their best day in more than three months, while stocks in Thailand advanced 0.4%, but faced their worst week in five months.
Equities in Singapore added 0.7%, but were on track for their seventh consecutive weekly drop.
The city-state said its banks had insignificant exposure to troubled Swiss bank Credit Suisse. Meanwhile, its non-oil domestic exports fell in February as widely expected by analysts.
Analysts at Barclays said in note that soft export data supported their expectation the Monetary Authority of Singapore would not further hike rates in 2023, unless the February inflation print exceeded the central bank’s projections.
Malaysian bonds emerged as a haven last month for foreign investors in Asia on improving growth outlook and low prospects of further policy rate hikes by the country’s central bank.
Malaysia’s 10-yr benchmark yield was unchanged at 3.971%, while the ringgit was poised for its best week since Jan. 27.