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KOREAN WON: The won leads losses in Asian FX, with USD/KRW sitting 5.90 fig.
higher at KRW1,175.95. The focus has been on the contentious Hong Kong bill,
passed by the Congress in the NY/Asia crossover amid reports suggesting that
U.S. Pres Trump plans to sign it into law. Further pressure comes from Trump's
most recent criticism of China's attitude in phase-one trade talks & yesterday's
RTRS report suggesting that the negotiations may drag on into next year.
- Locally, the string of declines in South Korean trade numbers was extended
upon the release of the data for the first 20 days of this month. Exports fell
9.6% Y/Y, while imports shrunk 11.2% Y/Y, indicating that the trade war is
taking its toll.
- According to a diplomatic source speaking to Chosun Ilbo, the U.S. is
"preparing to withdraw one brigade in case [defence cost-sharing] negotiations
with South Korea do not go as well as Pres Trump wants."
- Bulls keep an eye on the psychological KRW1,180.00 barrier, which coincides
with the 50-DMA. A break here opens the Oct 18 high of KRW1,182.15. Bears look
for a retreat under y'day's high of KRW1,171.20 to fill the gap from the open.