22 July 2005, 11:12  Impact of China yuan revaluation on Asian currencies will be limited

China's decision to revalue the yuan will have little impact on Asia's real economy and a limited impact on regional currencies, Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB) said "The main impact, in our view, will be on regional currencies against the US dollar from modest yuan appreciation," CSFB said in a statement following China's decision, which effectively revalued the yuan upwards by two pct But CSFB added that any appreciation of Asian currencies will still be limited as there are few signs of overheating across the region while exports and domestic demand are slowing Korea's won and Taiwan's dollar are the currencies most likely to be affected by China's decision to scrap the yuan peg to the US dollar because of their close trade and investment ties with the country, CSFB said But the brokerage added that the impact will still be limited "Given that the yuan remains a difficult currency to speculate against, we would still expect that the won could be seen as one of the main proxies of a yuan play," CSFB said. "However, over the medium-term, we assume that Korean won is unlikely to appreciate by more than 2-3 pct, as weak domestic demand and declining export growth should prompt the Bank of Korea to stay on the soft side of the yuan," it added For Taiwan, CSFB said "although relative depreciation may hurt Taiwanese corporates with yuan exposure, the scale of depreciation is likely to be very minor." Economists said that Malaysia's decision to follow China and allow the ringgit, which has been set at 3.80 to the dollar since 1998, to operate in a managed float against a basket of trade-weighted currencies is expected to have a muted impact on the country's economy CSFB said it expects no more than a 1.5-2.5 pct appreciation in the Malaysian ringgit over the next six months The peg for the Hong Kong dollar, which trades in a band of 7.75-7.85 to the US dollar, is likely to remain unchanged given the diverging fundamentals between Hong Kong and China, CSFB said

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