Yuan hovers at key 7/dollar mark ahead of Q2 economic data

    SHANGHAI, July 13 (Reuters) - The yuan hovered around the
key 7 per dollar threshold on Monday, ahead of economic data
this week that will shed light on the economic recovery in China
from the virus pandemic, while gains in the equity market
continued to support sentiment.
    Prior to market opening, the People's Bank of China (PBOC)
set the midpoint rate at 6.9965 per dollar, snapping
four straight days of advances, and was 22 pips, or 0.03%,
weaker than the previous fix of 6.9943. 
    In the spot market, onshore yuan opened at 7.0000
per dollar and was changing hands at 6.9988 at midday, 12 pips
firmer than the previous late session close. And it traded in a
tight range of about 100 pips on Monday morning, following a
0.96% gain last week, the biggest weekly rise since January
    "Firmer global equities and the risk-on tone should keep a
negative weight on USD-Asia for now," Terence Wu, FX strategist
at OCBC Bank, said in a note.
    "Look for the USD/CNH to stay heavy within a new 6.9800 to
7.0400 range in a multi-session horizon. Further out, the
Chinese recovery story looks increasingly entrenched, and we
look for a confirmation of that through the Chinese data dump
this week, featuring trade, industrial production, retail sales
and GDP this week."
    China is due to release second quarter economic figures on
Thursday, with analysts widely expecting GDP to have rebounded
from a record 6.8% contraction in the first quarter.
    But some market participants said there remains uncertainty
about the pace of economic recovery as the coronavirus pandemic
has yet to peak globally.
    Chinese shares firmed on Monday, even as regulators vowed to
crack down on illegal market behavior.
    Separately, some traders said they saw rising interest from
corporate clients to sell dollars for yuan to lock in exchange
rate profits, with dollar sales supporting the yuan's value.
    The offshore yuan was trading at 6.9988 per dollar
as of midday.
    The yuan market at 0400 GMT: 
 Item               Current  Previous  Change
 PBOC midpoint      6.9965   6.9943    -0.03%
 Spot yuan          6.9988   7         0.02%
 Divergence from    0.03%              
 Spot change YTD                       -0.51%
 Spot change since 2005                18.26%
    Key indexes:
 Item            Current     Previous  Change
 Thomson         92.54       92.62     -0.1
 CNH index                             
 Dollar index    96.45       96.609    -0.2
*Divergence of the dollar/yuan exchange rate. Negative number
indicates that spot yuan is trading stronger than the midpoint.
The People's Bank of China (PBOC) allows the exchange rate to
rise or fall 2% from official midpoint rate it sets each

 Instrument            Current   Difference
                                 from onshore
 Offshore spot yuan    6.9988    0.00%
 Offshore              7.1305    -1.88%
*Premium for offshore spot over onshore
**Figure reflects difference from PBOC's official midpoint,
since non-deliverable forwards are settled against the midpoint.

 (Reporting by Winni Zhou and Andrew Galbraith; Editing by
Jacqueline Wong)

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