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Indonesia Rupiah Drops for Second Day on Inflation, Export Data

Indonesia’s rupiah retreated for a second day on concern Southeast Asia’s biggest economy is slowing. Bonds advanced.

Inflation cooled for a fourth straight month in December to the lowest level since March 2010, the Central Bureau of Statistics said yesterday, giving the central scope to cut borrowing costs when it meets on Jan. 12. Exports rose 8.3 percent in November from a year earlier, the least since September 2009, separate data showed.

“There are concerns about yesterday’s data indicating an economic slowdown,” said Saktiandi Supaat, head of foreign-exchange research at Malayan Banking Bhd. in Singapore. “With these numbers, there is a small possibility that the central bank may cut interest rates this month.”

The rupiah slipped 0.9 percent to 9,159 per dollar as of 3:15 p.m. in Jakarta, according to prices from local banks compiled by Bloomberg. The currency dropped 0.6 percent in 2011.

Consumer prices rose 3.79 percent last month from a year earlier after increasing 4.15 percent in November.

Bank Indonesia Governor Darmin Nasution left the nation’s benchmark interest rate unchanged at 6 percent last month.

The yield on the government’s benchmark 8.25 percent notes due July 2021 fell 10 basis points, or 0.1 percentage point, to 6.02 percent today, according to the midday prices by Inter-Dealer Market Association. The rate dropped 173 basis points last year.

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