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Rupiah Drops to Three-Year Low as Exports Fall for Sixth Month

Indonesia’s rupiah weakened to a three-year low after data showed exports contracted for a sixth month, adding to concern the current-account deficit will widen from a record.

Overseas sales dropped 9.4 percent in September, the longest streak of declines since 2009, after falling a revised 25 percent the previous month, the statistics bureau said in Jakarta today. The current-account shortfall was at $6.9 billion in the second quarter. The nation’s trade surplus widened to $553 million in September, compared with a revised $233 million in August and the $2.4 billion recorded a year earlier.

“Falling exports reduce the onshore supply of dollars, while demand from corporates continues to be strong as the end of the year approaches,” said Rully Nova, a currency analyst at PT Bank Himpunan Saudara 1906 in Jakarta. “The trade surplus is still far from recovering to levels seen last year.”

The rupiah declined 0.2 percent to 9,623 per dollar as of 4 p.m. in Jakarta, after touching 9,664 earlier, the weakest level since October 2009, prices from local banks compiled by Bloomberg show. The currency fell for a ninth month in October, the longest run of losses in Bloomberg data going back to 1991. One-month implied volatility, which measures exchange-rate swings used to price options, held at 5 percent.

A separate report today showed consumer prices gained 4.61 percent in October, the most in 13 months, compared with 4.31 percent the previous month and the 4.59 percent predicted by analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

The yield on the government’s 7 percent bonds maturing in May 2022 dropped three basis points, or 0.03 percentage point, to 5.69 percent, the lowest level since Aug. 6, according to the Inter Dealer Market Association.

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