Hong Kong Greenback Hits Weak Finish of Band, HKMA Intervenes For First Time Since November


(Bloomberg) — Hong Kong’s de facto central financial institution purchased native {dollars} to defend its peg to the dollar for the primary time since November, as a hunch in financial institution borrowing prices made shorting town’s foreign money a preferred commerce.

Most Learn from Bloomberg

The Hong Kong Financial Authority bought HK$4.2 billion ($538 million) price of native {dollars}. The operation will cut back town’s combination steadiness, a gauge of interbank liquidity, to HK$91.86 billion on February 15. This transfer might probably drive up native funding prices and squeezing the bearish trades.

A hunch within the metropolis’s interbank charges — to their deepest ever low cost to US counterparts — prompted hedge funds to borrow the foreign money cheaply and promote it towards the higher-yielding US greenback. The one-month Hibor fell to a five-month low of two.12% Tuesday. Comparable charge on the dollar, or Libor, stood at 4.58% as of Friday, ensuing within the widest unfold on file.

HK Greenback Carry Commerce Flares on Widest Yield Hole Since 2007

The HKMA regularly intervened to spice up the native greenback from Could to November, lowering town’s combination steadiness to the bottom since 2020. Whereas such a transfer would finally help the foreign money, it may additionally act as a headwind for the native financial system. Hong Kong’s progress contracted final yr for the third time since 2019.

“The Hong Kong greenback weakening is more likely to be short-lived,” mentioned Samuel Tse, economist at DBS Financial institution in Hong Kong. “When the demand for Hong Kong greenback property returns amid China’s reopening, the native foreign money will strengthen once more,” he mentioned, forecasting it to commerce at 7.78 by quarter-end.

Invoice Ackman, the billionaire founding father of hedge fund Pershing Sq. Capital Administration LP, mentioned in November he was betting towards Hong Kong’s foreign money and its peg citing town’s weak financial system. Kyle Bass, the founding father of Hayman Capital Administration and George Soros have additionally wagered on a collapse of Hong Kong’s foreign money peg up to now.

What the Hong Kong Greenback Peg Is and Why It Issues: QuickTake

(Provides newest combination steadiness, updates Hibor-Libor hole)

Most Learn from Bloomberg Businessweek

©2023 Bloomberg L.P.