BENGALURU: Most Asian currencies drifted in a narrow range on Monday with the Thai baht and the Indonesian rupiah leading gains, while their equity peers slipped as investors awaited further clues on the outlook for inflation globally.
Market participants look forward to the US Personal Consumption Index and inflation data from Europe this week, which could prompt their respective central banks to ease their hawkish stances.
“The recent US data have been mixed and until we see a string of stronger data, the dollar is likely to remain under pressure,” Win Thin, global head of currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman said.
Data last week showed US business activity held steady in November, but employment in the private sector declined.
The dollar index took a breather during the day, standing at 103.31, down from 103.41 previously as at 0620 GMT.
Back in the region, Thailand baht and the Indonesian rupiah rose 0.4% and 0.3% each, leading the pack for the day, while the Singapore dollar and the Malaysian ringgit edged marginally higher.
Additionally, Taiwan’s dollar ended about 0.2% higher, and is on track for its best month in a year.
“It’s been about positioning and catch up. The last two weeks have been about beta and USD position unwinding in the region, and we think it’s not yet about fundamental convictions,” Natwest analysts wrote.
Markets in India were closed for a local holiday.