The won fluctuated near an eight-week high against the dollar amid concern South Korean authorities will act to slow its appreciation to protect exporters. Government bonds were steady.
The currency strengthened 3.9 percent against the greenback in the past month and 3.8 percent against the yen, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Bank of Korea Governor Kim Choong Soo said May 5 he expects the yen to continue to weaken, intensifying competition in industries including automobiles, according to Yonhap News.
“Investors are worried the authorities may step in to try to slow the gains in the won to help protect exports,” said Hong Seok Chan, currency analyst at Daishin Economic Research Institute in Seoul. “Meanwhile, speculation that exporters, including shipbuilders, may try to sell dollars from their overseas income is supporting the won.”