Singapore Markets close in 2 hrs 9 mins

EM ASIA FX-Asia currencies softer on outflow worry ahead of Fed outcome

(Adds text, updates prices)

By Patturaja Murugaboopathy

June 13 (Reuters) - Asian currencies edged lower on

Wednesday, ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's policy decision

on fears that a hawkish tone could affect regional assets and

trigger more capital outflows.

Beside the expected announcement of a quarter-point rate

rise, investors will be looking for clues on the pace of future

rate hikes from the Fed's "dot plot" that could signal whether

most of its policy committee now expect more than three rate

increases this year.

The "dot plot" is policymakers' rate projections and

provides a view into their interest rate outlook.

"Given that, it is the combination of higher Fed rates and

the run down in its balance sheet that is pressuring emerging

markets, an aggressive Fed puts more pressure on Asian

currencies," said Greg McKenna, Chief Market Strategist at


The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies

inched up 0.03 percent to 93.829 after rising 0.25

percent the previous day.

The Indian rupee dropped 0.2 percent on concerns

over price pressures, after data on Tuesday showed retail

inflation accelerating to a four-month high of 4.87 percent in


The Malaysian ringgit also shed 0.15 percent on weak

equities, lower oil prices and foreign outflows. In May,

foreigners sold a net $4.7 billion in Malaysian bond and equity

markets, the biggest amount in more than a year.

The Philippine peso touched its lowest since June

2006 on concerns over the country's high inflation rates.

Inflation picked up further in May, bringing the average

rate in the first five months of the year to 4.1 percent,

outside the central bank's 2-4 percent comfort range.

On Wednesday, the Philippine central bank said it will

consider not just recent inflation data but all potential

drivers of future inflation when it reviews monetary policy next


Investors were also watching out for the European Central

Bank policy meeting on Thursday, in which it could signal

intentions to start unwinding its massive bond purchasing


"We still think ECB may not commit to a decision on exit

prematurely before inflation shows signs of reacceleration but

the narrative out of the debate (hawkish hold) could still be

supportive of EUR," Saktiandi Supaat, head of FX research at

Maybank in Singapore, said in a report.

The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against

the dollar at 0530 GMT.


Change as of 0530 GMT

Currency Latest Previous Pct

bid day Move

Japan yen 110.620 110.36 -0.24

Sing dlr 1.337 1.3361 -0.04

Taiwan dlr 29.868 29.860 -0.03

Baht 32.100 32.075 -0.08

Peso 52.990 52.95 -0.08

Rupee 67.565 67.48 -0.13

Ringgit 3.994 3.988 -0.15

Yuan 6.403 6.4040 +0.01

*Indonesian and S.Korean markets

are closed for holidays

Change so far in 2018

Currency Latest End 2017 Pct

bid Move

Japan yen 110.620 112.67 +1.85

Sing dlr 1.337 1.3373 +0.04

Taiwan dlr 29.868 29.848 -0.07

Korean won 1077.20 1070.50 -0.62


Baht 32.100 32.58 +1.50

Peso 52.990 49.93 -5.77

Rupiah 13925.0 13565 -2.59


Rupee 67.565 63.87 -5.47

Ringgit 3.994 4.0440 +1.25

Yuan 6.403 6.5069 +1.62

(Reporting by Patturaja Murugaboopathy in Bengaluru

Editing by Jacqueline Wong)