Rupiah Strengthens 15 Points at IDR11,975

Dow Climbs 3.91 Points at 6,930.40

Thursday, 12 March 2009 08:54:50

South Korean wonStockWatch (Jakarta) - The Dow Jones Industrial Averages (DJIA) closed slightly higher in the trading on Wednesday (11/3) by 3.91 points (0.06%) at 6,930.40 as Standard & Poors 500 (S&P500) Index rose 1.76 points (0.24%) at 721.36 and Nasdaq Composite Index (NCI) stepped up 13.36 points (0.98%) at 1,371.64.

Dow was up tracking shares of financial sector after reports that JP Morgan recorded net profit in the period of January-February 2009, like Citigroup Inc said the day before. Dow's increase was relatively slight on decline in energy sector's shares after fuel price decline.

In Asia Pacific, the stock markets were mixed in the morning trading on Thursday (12/3) as Japan's Nikkei 225 index at 09:46 local time dropped 33.46 points (0.46%) at 7,342.66, South Korea's Kospi Index at 09:46 Seoul time rose 4.60 points (0.41%) at 1,132.15 and Australia's All Ordinaries Index at 12:04 local time stepped up 0.40 point (0.01%) at 3,199.50. (yan)

Rupiah Strengthens 15 Points at IDR11,975

Friday, 13 March 2009 17:45:23

South Korean won

StockWatch (Jakarta) - Rupiah strengthened by 15 points versus the US dollar at the Jakarta interbank spot market today (Friday 13/3) at IDR11,975 compared to Thursday's (12/3) closing at IDR11,990.

A foreign currency dealer at a private bank in Jakarta said rupiah appreciation was triggered by positive activities in the stock market and profit taking of the US dollar. "Weekend factor caused profit taking in the currency market," the dealer said. He said rupiah is likely to weaken at IDR11,900-12,050 next week as investors will sell rupiah to anticipate general election campaigns.

Yet, rupiah was mixed against the other foreign currencies and the rate versus the Singapore dollar appreciated at IDR7,787.74 from 7,847.30, but the rate versus the Hong Kong dollar appreciated at IDR1,546.33 from 1,549.46, the rate versus the Australian dollar weakened at IDR7,890.62 from 7,748.47 and the rate versus the euro depreciated at IDR15,477 from 15,355.78. (konrad/bw)

US Dollar Takes Bearish Turn Lower - US Retail Sales Could Impact Risk Trends on Thursday

Wednesday, 11 March 2009 21:09:22 GMT

Written by Terri Belkas, Currency Strategist
  • New Zealand Dollar Surges as RBNZ Signals End to Easing Cycle, Australian Dollar to Face Employment Data Overnight
  • Euro Rallies for Test of 1.2850, Swiss Franc at Risk Ahead of Expected SNB Rate Cut
  • British Pound Rebounds Despite Disappointing UK Trade Figures, Start of Quantitative Easing

US dollar price action was primarily responsible for much of what happened throughout the forex markets on Wednesday, as the DXY index finally broke below critical trendline support, suggesting the currency is officially turning lower. There was little in the way of fundamental news for the US, but that will change on Thursday as the Commerce Department is forecasted to report that US retail sales fell negative for the seventh time during the past eight months in February, as deteriorating labor markets, tight credit conditions, and a year-long recession weighs heavy on the minds of consumers. More specifically, advance retail sales are anticipated to have contracted 0.5 percent during the month, and excluding auto sales are expected to have slumped 0.2 percent, marking what may end up being a consistent trend through the first half of 2009. As we saw with US non-farm payrolls, the impact of a disappointing result may be mixed, as the Federal Reserve has already cut the fed funds target to a record low range of 0.0 percent - 0.25 percent and has no room to cut further. As a result, it will be important to gauge the impact of the news on DJIA or S&P 500 futures, as a sharp decline would signal flight-to-quality and US dollar strength, while gains would suggest a pickup in risk appetite and thus, US dollar weakness.

Yen Gains as Chinese Exports Slump

March 11th, 2009

Japanese yenThe yen rose today against the other major currencies on Forex as the China’s exports declined at a record fast pace and the largest Swiss bank reported an increased loss.

Japan Oct-Dec Revised Real GDP -3.2% Q/Q; Prelim -3.3%

Wednesday, 11 March 2009 21:09:22 GMT

Written by Terri Belkas, Currency Strategist
Japan Oct-Dec Revised Real GDP -3.2% Q/Q; Prelim -3.3%

TOKYO (Dow Jones)--Japan's economy contracted slightly less than initially reported in the final quarter of 2008, the government said Thursday.
Gross domestic product shrank a price-adjusted 3.2% on quarter during the October-December period, or 12.1% in annualized terms, revised data released by the Cabinet Office showed.
The revised figures confirm that a sharp fall in exports due to the global slowdown has battered the world's second largest economy. Companies slashed capital spending in reaction to tumbling profits and reduced demand for their products, while consumer spending was sluggish as shoppers worried about the worsening job market.

The headline figures were slightly better than the original estimates made a month ago of a 3.3% on-quarter fall, or an annualized 12.7% contraction. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires and The Nikkei had forecast on average that the revised GDP data would show a contraction of 3.4% on quarter, or 12.8% on an annualized basis.

Capital spending was revised down to a decrease of 5.4% on quarter from a preliminary 5.3% fall, reflecting recent data that showed capital expenditure had fallen even more sharply than calculated for the preliminary GDP data.

Many analysts predict that Japan's economy will again shrink at a double digit pace in the first quarter of the fiscal year beginning April, because recent data have shown almost no sign of demand picking up.

Click here to go to Dow Jones NewsPlus, a web front page of today's most important business and market news, analysis and commentary: You can use this link on the day this article is published and the following day.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

Korean Won Rises as Asian Stocks Gain

March 10th, 2009

South Korean wonThe South Korean won rose for the third day against the U.S. dollar today as some Asian stock markets showed the growth and the high-yielding currencies were favored by the traders.

ECB might cut rates again, but not for much longer

by Angelo Airaghi [Guest Analyst]
As the economic crisis is worsening in the U.S., another government’s intervention might be implemented. In Europe, in the mean time, the European Central Bank (ECB) could cut rates again, if the economic growth will not pick up in the coming months. However, the downtrend in interest rates appears to be getting closer to an end for Europe.
Rate Last YCls % Chng 07 Opn YTD MTD
EURUSD 1.2805 1.2802 0.02% 1.3196 -2.96% 0.85%
USDJPY 97.39 97.210 0.19% 119.03 -18.18% -0.46%
GBPUSD 1.3834 1.3844 -0.07% 1.9583 -29.36% -3.38%
USDCHF 1.1556 1.1545 0.1% 1.2186 -5.17% -1.1%
AUDUSD 0.6479 0.6483 -0.06% 0.7896 -17.94% 0.76%
USDCAD 1.2886 1.2884 0.02% 1.1416 12.88% 1.51%
Economic numbers are worsening in the U.S.

The economic picture is deteriorating further in the United States, as unemployment is slumping into record lows and major U.S. industries are still struggling to remain above water. As a result, the Federal Reserve is expected to keep rates near 0 for most of 2009 and beyond, if growth will not pick up tangibly over the coming months. President Obama, in the mean time, outlined, is manifesto for the next fourth years: more taxation for the rich, a new green economy funded by the government, universal education and free healthcare. Obama’s project will mark an end to more than 20 years of Reagan policy, which started right after interest rates topped near 20% in 1980, and continued throughout the Bush administration. Savings should be the mantra for the future with the help of heavy government’s intervention, especially during hard times like the one we are currently experiencing. In February, the unemployment rate was above expectations and rose to 8.1% from 7.6% in January. Employment felt 651,000 on the top of January 655,000 and December 681,000. February’s decline was broadly based with the service production sector slumping 375,000.


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