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Indonesian Rupiah Drops for a Fifth Day on U.S. Deficit Concern

Indonesia’s rupiah fell for a fifth day as investors sold higher-yielding assets on speculation lawmakers in the U.S. will struggle to reach an agreement on deficit-cutting measures.

The currency had its longest run of losses in more than two months after a U.S. congressional supercommittee indicated it would be difficult to solve disputes over taxes and spending by a Nov. 23 deadline. The rupiah has dropped 2 percent this month even as Bank Indonesia Deputy Governor Hartadi Sarwono said in October policy makers will sell the dollar when needed to ease currency volatility.

“The debt issue has shifted to the U.S. now, prompting people to move to a safe haven like the dollar,” said Bambang Eko Joewono, the Jakarta-based head of the global-markets division at PT Bank UOB Indonesia. “Bank Indonesia will come in and defend the currency at 9,125.”

The rupiah fell 0.2 percent to 9,038 per dollar as of 3:50 p.m. in Jakarta, according to prices from local banks compiled by Bloomberg. The currency reached 9,088 earlier, which was the weakest level since Sept. 26.

Southeast Asia’s biggest economy will grow 6.5 percent next year, compared with a previous estimate of 6.7 percent, Bank Indonesia said last week.

The yield on the government’s benchmark 8.25 percent bonds due July 2021 was unchanged at 6.35 percent today, according to the Inter-Dealer Market Association. The rate increased 12 basis points, or 0.12 percentage point, last week.

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