South Korea’s won completed its longest run of weekly gains of 2015 as traders pushed back bets for Federal Reserve rate increases after disappointing U.S. data.
The currency climbed 0.9 percent for a third weekly advance to 1,093.04 a dollar at the close in Seoul, data compiled by Bloomberg show. It appreciated 0.2 percent Friday and earlier rose to a two-month high of 1,091.61.
Figures this week painted contrasting pictures. South Korea’s trade surplus rose to a record, even as exports and manufacturing contracted. U.S. payrolls numbers Friday are forecast to show companies created fewer jobs in March, after reports earlier in the week showed consumer spending and factory output missed estimates.
“Sentiment toward the greenback shrank sharply after U.S. data showed weakness and the won broke the psychologically important level of 1,100,” said Son Eun Jeong, a Seoul-based currency analyst at Woori Futures Co. “The market seems to be cautious as they await the U.S. jobs data.”
U.S. companies hired 245,000 workers last month, down from 295,000 in February, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey. Futures are showing odds for a Fed rate increase in September of 77 percent and 81 percent and 89 percent for October and December, respectively. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed Friday after falling in the past two days. It was steady for the week.
South Korea reported foreign-exchange reserves Friday of $362.75 billion in March.
Government bonds rose this week, pushing yields to record lows. The yield on the December 2017 notes fell six basis points, or 0.06 percentage point, to 1.72 percent, Korea Exchange prices show. The 10-year yield declined 10 basis points to 2.09 percent.