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EMERGING MARKETS-Emerging stocks hit one-week high on upbeat U.S. data

By Karin Strohecker
    LONDON, Oct 6 Emerging stocks hit a one-week
high on Thursday after strong U.S. economic data, though bets on
a December rate rise by the Federal Reserve brought many
currencies under pressure. 
    MSCI's emerging benchmark rose 0.3 percent,
following developed bourses higher and lifted by gains across
Asia , Turkey and parts of central and
eastern Europe.
    The rise follows a recent batch of upbeat data from the
world's largest economy, the latest on Wednesday showing U.S.
services sector activity soaring to an 11-month high thanks to
broad-based improvement across the index, helping the case for
the Fed to raise interest rates. 
    More key numbers are coming on Friday, when U.S non-farm
payrolls data is expected to show gains of 175,000 jobs,
according to a Reuters poll. A robustly growing U.S. economy is
generally seen as a positive for emerging markets even if it
leads the Fed to raise interest rates.  
    "The data has been quite strong yesterday, but also in
recent days more generally ... Payrolls is one thing that may
introduce some thrill at the end of trading this week," said
Cristian Maggio, head of emerging markets strategy at TD
Securities.
    Maggio predicted a Fed move in December would have only a
temporary negative impact on emerging markets.  
    "If they hike, it is sort of a dovish hike - they will step
up a bit the process of normalising the interest rates, but we
expect them to signal that this will be an extremely gradual
hiking cycle," he said.
    However, with the dollar index up nearly 1 percent
this week, emerging currencies felt the pressure. 
    South Africa's rand weakened by 0.3 percent against
the greenback, while Israel's shekel matched that fall.
    Russia's rouble traded flat in line with oil prices
 while Turkey's lira followed suit. 
    Across central and eastern Europe, Hungary's forint
 slipped 0.2 percent against the euro after hitting a
15-month high earlier. Hungary's economic and credit rating
improvement is enticing more investors, and some local market
players said investors may test authorities' tolerance for a
stronger forint.
    Concerns that the European Central Bank could taper its
stimulus has sent a chill through regional assets, with bonds
selling off, especially in Poland, where five- and 10-year
yields are near three-month highs 
    Yet a Reuters poll showed investors were upbeat about
Hungarian assets further ahead, expecting forint-denominated
government bonds to outperform Polish peers. 

  Emerging Markets Prices from Reuters            
 Equities                  Latest    Net Chg  % Chg  % Chg      
     
                                                     on year    
       
 Morgan Stanley               
 Emrg Mkt Indx    918.20    +2.94   +0.32  +15.62     
       
 Czech Rep            886.77    +5.68   +0.64   -7.27     
       
 Poland           1754.88    -7.35   -0.42   -5.61     
       
 Hungary           28337.59  -149.46   -0.52  +18.46     
       
 Romania           6939.94   -23.72   -0.34   -0.92     
       
 Greece              574.00    -1.37   -0.24   -9.08     
       
 Russia             998.61    +1.50   +0.15  +31.91     
       
 South Africa    45388.85   +80.37   +0.18   -0.89     
       
 Turkey          78419.73  +566.09   +0.73   +9.33     
       
 China             3005.51    +7.03   +0.23  -15.08     
       
 India           28075.69  -145.29   -0.51   +7.50     
       
            
 Currencies              Latest    Prev    Local    Local       
      
                                   close   currency currency    
       
                                           % change % change    
       
                                                    in 2016     
      
 Czech Rep      27.00     27.01   +0.03    -0.01      
     
 Poland          4.30      4.30   -0.02    -0.93      
     
 Hungary       305.00    304.50   -0.16    +3.16      
     
 Romania         4.47      4.46   -0.29    +1.07      
     
 Serbia        122.97    123.02   +0.04    -1.22      
     
 Russia            62.31     62.33   +0.03   +17.08      
     
 Kazakhstan       332.80    332.56   -0.07    +2.31      
     
 Ukraine           25.86     25.84   -0.08    -7.38      
     
 South Africa      13.78     13.71   -0.46   +12.23      
     
 Kenya            101.17    101.15   -0.02    +1.02      
     
 Israel             3.78      3.77   -0.17    +2.97      
     
 Turkey             3.05      3.05   +0.02    -4.37      
     
 China              6.67      6.67   -0.00    -2.65      
     
 India             66.65     66.56   -0.13    -0.67      
     
 Brazil             3.22      3.22   +0.04   +23.05      
     
 Mexico            19.23     19.21   -0.12   -10.70      
     
            
 Debt                 Index   Strip Spd  Chg   %Rtn   Index     
       
 Sov'gn Debt  EMBIG   351         1    .04  7 71.27 1   
        
            
 All data taken from Reuters at 09:25 GMT. Currency percent
change calculated from the daily U.S. close at 2130 GMT.
    
    For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2016, see link.reuters.com/jus35t
    For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2016, see link.reuters.com/weh36s
    For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging Europe performance 2016, see link.reuters.com/jun28s
    For GRAPHIC on MSCI frontier index performance 2016, see link.reuters.com/zyh97s
    For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see 
    For TURKISH market report, see 
    For RUSSIAN market report, see )

 (Reporting by Karin Strohecker; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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