Won Rebounds as U.S. Jobs Data Boosts South Korea Export Outlook

  • Jobs figure fails to lift dollar and Fed rate-hike bets
  • Kospi rises as investors buy the most equities since July 1

South Korea’s won rose against the dollar after posting its worst weekly loss in seven weeks as stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs data boosted the outlook for the Asian nation’s exports.

The Kospi share index also advanced along with emerging-market equities and currencies after the U.S. created 287,000 positions in June, the most since October. The world’s biggest economy is South Korea’s second-largest single export destination after China. The Bank of Korea meets on July 14 and all 19 economists surveyed by Bloomberg expect policy makers to keep the benchmark interest rate at a record low of 1.25 percent.

"The U.S. jobs figures came out stronger than the market had anticipated, but this failed to lift the dollar and expectations of a U.S. rate hike," said Jeon Seung Ji, a currency analyst at Samsung Futures Inc. in Seoul. “Risk appetite is pretty solid today and this has spurred foreign buying of local stocks."

The won climbed 1.3 percent to 1,147.23 per dollar in Seoul, its biggest gain in five weeks, data from local banks compiled by Bloomberg show. The currency fell 1.4 percent last week. The Kospi rose 1.3 percent as foreign investors purchased a net $221 million of stocks, the most since July 1.

South Korean received a total of 3,868 billion won ($3.368 billion) in bids and accepted 900 billion won at its latest auction of five-year bonds on Monday, according to the Ministry of Strategy and Finance. The average yield was 1.235 percent.

Government notes were little changed, with the three-year yield at 1.22 percent and the 10 year at 1.38 percent.

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