HONG KONG?The Chinese yuan is on track for its worst monthly performance in more than a year in November, as the surging U.S. dollar continues to force the currency to weaken.
China's central bank on Monday set the yuan lower against the U.S. dollar for a 12th consecutive day in its daily fix, at 6.8985 against the dollar, a fresh eight-year low for the currency.
The yuan has weakened 1.7% against the dollar so far this month, with gains accelerating since the election of Donald Trump as U.S. president on Nov. 8. His planned economic stimulus has increased expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will have to act more aggressively to contain inflation, prompting strength in the dollar against most major global currencies.
It is the worst one-month performance for the yuan since August 2015, when a surprise move to a market-determined exchange rate prompted a sharp devaluation of the yuan and losses for equities world-wide, as investors grappled with the new regime. The yuan weakened 2.6% against the U.S. dollar that month.
Onshore, where the Chinese currency is allowed to trade within 2% of the so-called daily fix, the yuan weakened 0.1% to 6.8945 against the U.S. dollar in trading Monday.
In Hong Kong, where the currency trades freely around the clock, the offshore yuan was last flat against the U.S. dollar at 6.9118.
Funds have fled emerging markets and headed to the U.S. and Japan since the U.S. election, said Alexander Lee, Hong Kong and China strategist at DBS Vickers in Hong Kong. That drove the dollar higher and put pressure on the yuan as a result.
"It's mainly driven by the stronger dollar," he said. "We're approaching the levels around 7 where the market will likely think the decline is over."
DBS Vickers expects the yuan to fall to 7.08 against the dollar by the third quarter of next year.
The yuan was broadly stable against the Thomson Reuters/HKEX renminbi currency index, which tracks its strength against a basket of 14 currencies, designed to broadly reflect the gauge that the PBOC targets. The index was last flat at 95.38, retracing some gains seen Friday.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
November 21, 2016 01:35 ET (06:35 GMT)
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