STI

EMERGING MARKETS-Indonesia stocks, rupiah weaken on consumer confidence 'reality check'

Credit: REUTERS/WILLY KURNIAWAN

By Harish Sridharan

Sept 8 (Reuters) - Indonesian shares .JKSE dropped 1.7% to hit a three-week low and the rupiah weakened on Wednesday after data showed consumer confidence in Southeast Asia's most populous nation fell last month even though some COVID-19 curbs were eased.

Other equities in the region came under pressure from concerns over slowing economic growth in the United States, while emerging Asian currencies broadly weakened against a stronger dollar, with Thailand's baht THB=TH and South Korea's won KRW=KFTC leading losses.

In Jakarta, a central bank survey showed the consumer confidence index fell further in August to 77.3, compared with 80.2 in the previous month. The rupiah fell 0.4%.

"What we are seeing at the moment is a bit of reality check. There is still an element of risk aversion out there," said Mitul Kotecha, Chief EM Asia & Europe strategist at TD Securities.

The survey overshadowed some relief on the pandemic front for Indonesia, whose daily coronavirus positivity rate dropped below the World Health Organization's benchmark for the first time on Tuesday.

"Though cases have come down, there is still caution amongst consumers and retailers and that is dragging down consumer confidence, which in turn is weighing on markets in Indonesia," Kotecha said.

In Malaysia, the ringgit MYR= and stocks .KSLE both dipped a day before the central bank's policy decision.

A Reuters survey showed that Bank Negara Malaysia is expected to leave interest rates unchanged at 1.75%, as the country gradually reopens its economy amid a ramped-up COVID-19 vaccination drive.

Thailand's baht THB=TH, the region's worst performing currency this year, dropped 0.6% as the greenback .DXY hovered near a one-week peak. South Korea's won weakened 0.8%. USD/

A weaker overnight session on Wall Street hurt stocks in the region, with Singapore .STI, South Korea .KS11 and Taiwan .TWII shedding between 0.8% and 1.2%. .N

Equities in South Korea dropped for a second straight session, as regulatory risks hurt technology heavyweights and investors evaluated the risk of a slower recovery from the pandemic as local cases surged. .KS

HIGHLIGHTS

** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields are up 2.4 basis points at 6.141%​​

** Top loser on the Jakarta stock index .JKSE was Boston Furniture Industries Tbk PT SOFA.JK, down 8.96%

** Taiwan stocks .TWII close 0.9% lower, their lowest since August 27

Asia stock indexes and currencies at 0725 GMT

COUNTRY

FX RIC

FX DAILY %

FX YTD %

INDEX

STOCKS DAILY %

STOCKS YTD %

Japan

JPY=

+0.06

-6.32

.N225

0.89

9.97

China

CNY=CFXS

+0.06

+1.01

.SSEC

-0.04

5.82

India

INR=IN

-0.18

-0.66

.NSEI

-0.41

23.67

Indonesia

IDR=

-0.39

-1.58

.JKSE

-1.72

0.47

Malaysia

MYR=

-0.05

-3.27

.KLSE

-0.11

-2.79

Philippines

PHP=

+0.00

-4.27

.PSI

0.53

-2.67

S.Korea

KRW=KFTC

-0.76

-6.90

.KS11

-0.77

10.08

Singapore

SGD=

-0.04

-1.86

.STI

-1.24

7.96

Taiwan

TWD=TP

-0.25

+2.67

.TWII

-0.91

17.23

Thailand

THB=TH

-0.64

-8.69

.SETI

-0.14

12.76

Graphic: World FX rates https://tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E

Asian stock marketshttps://tmsnrt.rs/2zpUAr4

Jakarta shares at 3-week lowhttps://tmsnrt.rs/3zOUpCp

(Reporting by Harish Sridharan in Bengaluru; Editng by Devika Syamnath)

((Harish.Sridharan@thomsonreuters.com;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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