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(LEAD) S. Korea avoids U.S. currency manipulator designation, put on monitoring list

All News 06:08 April 30, 2016

(ATTN: CHANGES headline; ADDS details)

WASHINGTON, April 29 (Yonhap) -- The U.S. Treasury Department put South Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan and Germany on its "monitoring list" for foreign exchange policies Friday, but none was designed as a currency manipulator.

"Korea has a significant bilateral trade surplus with the United States and a material current account surplus," the department said in the Report on Foreign Exchange Policies of Major Trading Partners of the United States.

"Treasury estimates that during the second half of 2015 through March 2016, the Korean authorities intervened to resist depreciation of the won during periods of financial market turbulence, representing a shift from several years of asymmetric intervention to resist appreciation," the report said.

The report also urged South Korea to limit its foreign exchange intervention "only to circumstances of disorderly market conditions and to increase the transparency of its foreign exchange operations."

The report said that all five countries met two of the three criteria for "enhanced analysis," and none of them currently meets all three criteria, and therefore the treasury is not undertaking enhanced analysis for any country.

"No major trading partner of the United States met the standard of manipulating the rate of exchange between its currency and the United States dollar for purposes of preventing effective balance of payments adjustments or gaining unfair competitive advantage in international trade," the report said.

The department will closely monitor and assess the economic trends and foreign exchange policies of the economies on the monitoring list, it said.


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