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EMERGING MARKETS-Indonesian shares rise after c.bank holds rates, rupiah firms

    * BI maintains rates at record low
    * Taiwan stocks close at two-week high
    * Singapore's GDP grows 1.3% year-on-year, shares rise

    By Harish Sridharan
    May 25 (Reuters) - Indonesian shares inched higher on
Tuesday, after the central bank left rates unchanged as
expected, while the rupiah and other emerging Asian currencies
also firmed on a weaker U.S. dollar.
    Overnight gains on Wall Street helped lift Asian shares,
while the dollar held near a four-month low after Federal
Reserve officials allayed fears about monetary policy
tightening. 
    Indonesian shares gained as much as 1.5% earlier in
the session, but lost some ground before Bank Indonesia (BI)
decided it would keep rates unchanged at 3.5%.
    The rupiah, favoured by foreign investors looking to
tap Indonesia's high-yielding bonds, gained 0.2%. The currency
has come under renewed pressure this year amid capital outflows,
and is down around 2% so far in 2021.
    BI said it sought to maintain support for Southeast Asia's
biggest economy, ensuring stability in financial markets amid
the risk of outflows.
    "It's very much in line with expectations," said Mitul
Kotecha, Chief EM Asia and Europe strategist at TD Securities.
    "In our view, one of the key reasons they held rates was not
to provoke any adverse reaction in the rupiah. The reality is
that there is no urgency to easy policy at the moment," he said.
    Elsewhere, equities in Taiwan closed 1.6% higher at
a two-week high. 
    In Singapore, stocks gained 0.6% as the city-state's
economy expanded more than first thought, but struck a cautious
note about recovery due to uncertainties from the COVID-19
pandemic.

         
HIGHLIGHTS:    
    ** Top gainer on the Jakarta stock index was Hotel
Fitra International Tbk PT, up 32.33%
    ** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields are down 0.6 basis
points at 6.446%
    ** Min Aik Technology Co Ltd and Ampacs Corp
 top gainers on the Taiwan SE Weighted Index

    
  Asia stock indexes and                              
 currencies at   0813 GMT                        
 COUNTRY  FX RIC        FX     FX  INDE  STOCKS  STOCK
                     DAILY  YTD %     X   DAILY  S YTD
                         %                    %      %
 Japan               -0.04  -5.09  <.N2    0.67   4.04
                                   25>           
 China    <CNY=CFX   +0.18  +1.87  <.SS    2.40   3.12
          S>                       EC>           
 India               +0.19  +0.33  <.NS    0.13   8.84
                                   EI>           
 Indones             +0.17  -1.99  <.JK    0.91  -2.73
 ia                                SE>           
 Malaysi             +0.02  -2.97  <.KL    0.06  -3.35
 a                                 SE>           
 Philipp             -0.29  -0.31  <.PS    0.52  -13.2
 ines                              I>                1
 S.Korea  <KRW=KFT   +0.45  -3.19  <.KS    0.86  10.37
          C>                       11>           
 Singapo             +0.02  -0.47  <.ST    0.61  10.51
 re                                I>            
 Taiwan              +0.27  +2.18  <.TW    1.58  12.65
                                   II>           
 Thailan             +0.00  -4.43  <.SE    0.90   8.04
 d                                 TI>           
 

    

 (Additional reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan; Editing by
Ramakrishnan M.)
  
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