During early deals on Tuesday, the South East Asian currencies declined to multi-day lows against the US dollar as a fall in Asian stocks reduced demand for emerging-market assets.
The major markets across the Asia-Pacific region are trading weaker today, taking cues from Wall Street where the major indices ended lower on Monday following negative comments by analysts on financial stocks. Technology stocks ended weak following the fallout of the talks between IBM and Sun Microsystems. Veteran banking analyst Mike Mayo of Calyon Securities initiated coverage of several banks with either Sell or Underperform ratings, citing concerns about increased loan losses and the belief that government actions might not help as much as expected. Financial stocks led the declines on Wall Street.
The Dow closed Monday's session down 41.74 points or 0.5% at 7,976, the Nasdaq closed down 15.16 points or 0.9% at 1,607 and the S&P 500 closed down 7.02 points or 0.8% at 835.
In Asian trading, crude oil is currently down $0.10 at $50.95 a barrel in electronic trading. Light sweet crude for May delivery closed down $1.46 at $51.05 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Monday over demand concerns.
The Singapore dollar reached a 5-day low of 1.5107 against the US during early Asian trading on Tuesday. The pair that closed Monday's North American deals at 1.5071 is currently quoted at 1.5093. On the downside, 1.518 is seen as the next target level for the Singapore currency.
Tuesday morning in Asia, the Taiwan currency dropped to a 5-day low of 33.539 against the US dollar. The next downside target level for the Taiwan dollar is seen around 33.66. The pair that closed yesterday's deals at 33.25 is currently quoted at 33.49.
In economic news, Taiwan is set to provide March numbers for imports, exports and trade balance. Imports are predicted to fall 44.5 percent on year following the 31.6 percent annual decline in February. Exports are predicted to shed 35.3 percent after the 28.6 percent fall a month earlier. The trade balance is expected to jump 2.24 percent on year after the 1.67 percent gain in the previous month.
The Philippine peso reached a 4-day low of 48.0750 against the US dollar at 10:35 pm ET. On the downside, the peso is likely to find support near the 48.3 level. The dollar-peso pair, which closed Monday's North American deals at 47.8050, is currently trading at 47.93.
The Philippines will announce February figures for inflation today. Analysts are expecting inflation to climb 6.1 percent on month following the 0.5 percent gain in January. On an annual basis, inflation is forecast to slow to 6.6 percent from the current 7.3 percent.
The Malaysian ringgit traded down against the US dollar during Tuesday's early deals. At 11:00 pm ET, the ringgit touched a 4-day low of 3.5870 against the dollar, compared to 3.5665 hit late New York Monday. If the Malaysian currency falls further, 3.595 is seen as the next target level. The dollar-ringgit pair that closed Monday's New York trading at 3.5665 is currently quoted at 3.5850.
In economic news, Malaysia will announce foreign reserves data through March 26. Analysts are expecting a surplus of $91.2 billion, up from the $90.6 billion surplus in the previous week.
The Thai baht showed weakness against the US dollar during Tuesday's early Asian deals. At 10:35 pm ET, the baht slipped to a 5-day low of 35.4650 against the dollar, compared to Monday's closing value of 35.31. On the downside, 35.5 is seen as the next target level for the Thailand currency.
Against the Chinese yuan, the US dollar edged down during early deals on Tuesday. At 11:30 pm ET, the yuan declined to a 4-day low of 6.8405 against the dollar, moving from an early Asian session's 4-day high of 6.8342. The next downside target level for the Chinese currency is seen around 6.844. The dollar-yuan pair closed Monday's New York deals at 6.8358.
The People's Bank of China has set today's central parity rate for the dollar-yuan pair at 6.8340.
Across the Atlantic, the U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to release its monthly consumer credit report at 3 pm ET. Consumer credit for February is likely to show a decline of $1.5 billion.
In January, consumer credit rose by $1.8 billion to $2.56 trillion, as revolving credit rose by $0.9 billion to $0.96 trillion and non-revolving credit rose by $0.8 billion to $1.6 trillion.
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