Taiwan Dollar Forwards Touch Two-Week High on Economic Optimism

Taiwan dollar forwards touched a two-week high on signs the U.S. and Japanese economies are improving. Government bonds gained for a fourth day.

New-home construction in the U.S. jumped more than forecast in March, and the International Monetary Fund raised its 2013 expansion estimate for Japan to 1.6 percent from 1.2 percent. Strong domestic consumption and overseas demand for exports have buoyed Taiwan’s manufacturing sector, leading to relatively robust growth, HSBC Holdings Plc economists led by Hong Kong-based Qu Hongbin wrote in an April 15 research report.

One-month non-deliverable forwards were little changed at NT$29.85 per dollar as of 4:25 p.m. in Taipei, data compiled by Bloomberg show. They touched NT$29.810 earlier, the strongest level since April 2. The contracts weakened 3.2 percent this year. The Taiwan dollar gained 0.1 percent to NT$29.9, Taipei Forex Inc. prices show, paring its 2013 decline to 2.6 percent.

“Sentiment is quite good today after some U.S. data showing economic growth is picking up,” said Frances Cheung, a Hong Kong-based strategist at Credit Agricole SA. “The Taiwan dollar has weakened quite a bit lately. It’s experiencing some correction.”

The central bank has sold the Taiwan dollar in the run-up to the close on most days in the past year, according to traders who asked not to be identified.

One-month implied volatility, a gauge of expected moves in the exchange rate used to price options, slipped nine basis points, or 0.09 percentage point, to 3.43 percent.

The yield on the 0.875 percent bonds due January 2018 dropped two basis points to 0.928 percent, according to Gretai Securities Market. That’s the lowest level since March 7. The overnight interbank lending rate was little changed at 0.386 percent, according to a weighted average compiled by the Taiwan Interbank Money Center.