Chinese yuan continues to rally, hitting 24-month high against dollar

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/11/9 15:25:01

A bank officer counts banknotes. Photo:Xinhua

The Chinese currency, the yuan, strengthened to hit a 24-month high on Monday, as investors projected Joe Biden's winning US presidential election is most likely to remove uncertainty in the market, and that the world's second-largest economy's steady recovery would translate to a firmer currency.

The offshore yuan jumped by more than 200 basis points to reach 6.5614 yuan vs a US dollar by Monday noon, its strongest level since June 2018. 

On the same day, the yuan's central parity exchange rate, which is set by the central bank, rose 167 basis points to hit 6.6123 yuan vs a dollar, the highest level since June 28, 2018, data from the People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, showed. 

The yuan's rapid rise was in part due to the fact that Biden had been declared US President-elect, as he will likely continue negotiations with China to resolve the ongoing tariffs war. More importantly, the Chinese currency's rise was underpinned by the economy's resilience despite the still-raging pandemic outside of China, experts noted.

Despite the tremendous shock of the global pandemic, the resilient Chinese economy is the first major economy to post positive growth this year, growing 0.7 percent year-on-year in the first three quarters. In its latest report in October, the IMF projected that China, with a possible1.9-percent yearly GDP rise, will be the only major economy to achieve a growth in 2020.

The country's exports grew at their fastest pace in over a year in October, surging 11.4 percent year-on-year, with imports up 4.7 percent in the same month, data from Chinese customs showed on Saturday.

Lian Ping, head of the Zhixin Investment Research Institute, said that the Chinese yuan may continue to extend the current appreciation trend, along with Chinese authorities' efforts to accelerate internationalization of the yuan and further opening-up of the Chinese financial market.

Dong Dengxin, director of the Finance and Securities Institute at Wuhan University of Science and Technology, predicted that the Chinese yuan may fluctuate between 6.3 and 6.7 per dollar next year.

The Chinese central bank announced in October it was cutting the reserve requirement ratio for settling forward forex sales to zero from the current 20 percent, citing that the flexibility of the yuan's exchange rate has strengthened and the foreign exchange market has remained its stable operation. 

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