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U.S. dollar falls to lowest in over 4 years

2018/01/19 20:47:28

Taipei, Jan. 19 (CNA) The U.S. dollar fell to its lowest against the Taiwan dollar for more than four years on Friday on the back of more foreign fund inflows and the greenback shedding NT$0.132 to close at NT$29.430.

In addition to foreign fund inflows, the downward pressure on the U.S. dollar also reflected the strength of other regional currencies and strong foreign institutional buying of local equities, they said.

Meanwhile, seasonal fund demand from local exporters with the Lunar New Year holiday approaching also boosted the Taiwan dollar throughout the session, they added.

The U.S. dollar closed at its lowest since Oct. 23, 2013, when the greenback ended at NT$29.425 against the Taiwan dollar.

For the week, the U.S. dollar fell NT$0.170 or 0.58 percent against the Taiwan dollar.

On Friday, the greenback opened at NT$29.550, and moved between NT$29.387 and NT$29.553 before the close. Turnover totaled US$1.193 billion during the trading session.

Soon after the local foreign exchange market opened, the U.S. dollar faced strong selling as foreign investors moved funds into the region as the U.S. dollar index, which tracks the currencies of Washington's six top trading partners, continued to weaken, dealers said.

A weaker U.S. dollar index gave foreign investors a larger appetite to take risks by parking their funds in non-greenback assets, like the Taiwan dollar, they said.

A strong showing by the local equity market on the back of massive foreign institutional buying gave an additional boost to the Taiwan dollar, dealers said.

According to the Taiwan Stock Exchange, foreign institutional investors bought a net NT$8.62 billion (US$293 million) worth of shares on the main board, sending the weighted index up 0.72 percent at the end of the session on Friday.

Dealers said fund demand from Taiwanese exporters is expected to continue to push the U.S. dollar down ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, which will start on Feb. 15.

(By Chiu Po-sheng and Frances Huang)