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South Korean won leads Asian currencies lower

Currencies across the Asia Pacific region were losing ground to the greenback on Friday amid renewed fears over a potential conflict between the US and North Korea.

The won dropped half a per cent against the greenback to Won1,147 per dollar, down 2 per cent for the week and the lowest level in a month. The Philippine peso matched the won’s fall of 0.5 per cent at 51.048 per dollar, its weakest level since 2006.

The renminbi was down as well, off 0.4 per cent at Rmb6.6738 per dollar despite China’s central banks setting the currency’s trading band firmer on Friday.

The Australian dollar was down 0.4 per cent at $0.7844 after Malcolm Turnbull, Australia’s prime minister, said the country would invoke its long standing military alliance with America in the event the North Korean regime attacks the US.

The yen was gaining, however, strengthening to ‎¥109.06, an eight-week high against the dollar on the currency’s renewed haven status.