Tepid US jobs data bolsters Asian currencies on delayed Fed stimulus tapering hopes

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Emerging Asian currencies rose on Wednesday as disappointing US jobs data cemented expectations that the Federal Reserve will hold off from paring its stimulus at least until early 2014.

The South Korean won hit a nine-month high, nearing its peak this year, on sustained stock inflows.

The Malaysian ringgit advanced on short-covering, while Indonesia's rupiah touched a near five-week high after a strong bond sale.

Regional share prices also rose as US nonfarm payrolls increased by 148,000 workers in September, less than expected.

While the employment gain in August was revised up, the July figure was revised down to the weakest since June 2012.

The data implied the world's biggest economy was losing steam before the US government shutdown for more than two weeks.

After the indicator, a majority of US primary dealers said the Fed would not start trimming its bond-buying programme until March of next year, a Reuters poll showed.

"The net impact is going to be Asian currency-supportive, as it will push out market pricing for a taper into potentially the late stages of Q1 after a hopeful resolution to the US government's fiscal difficulties," Scotiabank said in a client note.

"We will have to be much less bearish on the space over the coming four months, at least until clearer signals from the Fed and its policy trajectory are present."