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EMERGING MARKETS-Malaysian shares slip on political woes as trade data supports ringgit

    * Graphic: World FX rates tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
    * Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks tmsnrt.rs/3lKhL5I
    * Ringgit climbs as Sept exports jump, trade surplus
increases
    * 2021 Budget passage to be key test for Malaysia govt - ING
    * Thai baht hits over 2-week high on data boost

    By Rashmi Ashok
    Oct 28 (Reuters) - Malaysian shares eased on Wednesday as
political tensions cast doubt over whether the government could
pass the 2021 budget next week, while a surge in September
exports and ballooning trade surplus helped prop up the ringgit.
    Broader Asian equities were subdued as COVID-19 cases spiked
in the United States, Russia, France and other countries,
prompting curbs from many European nations, with the looming
U.S. presidential election adding to worries.
    The Malaysian stock index fell 0.4%, continuing
recent declines, as uncertainty after Prime Minister Muhyiddin
Yassin's failed bid to declare a state of emergency sparked
calls for his resignation.
    "All eyes are on the 2021 Federal Budget next week, which
comes as a key test of confidence in Prime Minister Muhyiddin
Yassin's coalition government," analysts at ING wrote.
    "We see politics continuing to exert weakening pressure on
the ringgit. We are reviewing our end-year 4.18 USD/MYR forecast
for a possible upward revision."
    While a key ally affirmed support for the premier, his
position still remains precarious, with a wafer-thin majority in
parliament and no guarantee that all ruling coalition lawmakers
will vote in favour of the budget.
    The ringgit, however, reversed early losses to stand
0.2% higher after data showed Malaysia's exports jumped 13.6% in
September, rising at their fastest pace in nearly two years amid
a surge in demand for manufactured and agricultural goods.

    ING analysts say the wider trade surplus, fuelled by subdued
imports, is likely to remain the key life support for the
currency amidst the ongoing political uncertainty.
    Thailand's baht rose 0.3% to its highest in more
than two weeks and the stock index added 0.5% after data
showed the country's factory output dropped a
smaller-than-expected 2.75% in September.
    Thailand is set to release trade data for September on Oct.
30. Investors will closely watch for signs of a recovery in its
exports from the 8.2% drop recorded in August. 
    The Chinese yuan eased against the dollar after
some banks tweaked a methodology for fixing the yuan's daily
midpoint, in what some believe is a sign that Beijing may be
attempting to slow the pace of the rally in the currency.

    Despite the yuan's weakness casting a shadow, most Asian
currencies clocked slim gains as the dollar slipped in
the face of rising uncertainty around the Nov. 3 election.

    
    HIGHLIGHTS
    ** Top gainers on the Thailand's SETI included Thai
Energy Storage Technology 3K-BAT.BK, up 29.36%, and Erawan
Hotel Growth Property Fund, up 12.44%.
    ** Top losers on FTSE Bursa Malaysia Kl Index
included Top Glove Corporation Bhd, down 1.68%, and
Hartalega Holdings Bhd, down 1.42%. 
    ** Singapore's 10-year benchmark yield was down 0.6 basis
point at 0.843%,​​ while the 5-year benchmark yield fell 1.2
basis points to 0.464%​​. 


  Asia stock indexes and                                
 currencies at   0649 GMT                          
 COUNTRY  FX RIC       FX     FX     INDEX  STOCK  STOCK
                    DAILY  YTD %                S  S YTD
                        %                   DAILY      %
                                                %  
 Japan              +0.16  +4.20            -0.29  -1.01
 China    <CNY=CFX  -0.10  +3.75             0.52   7.25
          S>                                       
 India              -0.09  -3.24            -0.33  -2.62
 Malaysi            +0.19  -1.54            -0.33  -5.88
 a                                                 
 Philipp            +0.02  +4.71            -0.58  -18.3
 ines                                                  9
 S.Korea  <KRW=KFT  -0.45  +2.28             0.62   6.72
          C>                                       
 Singapo            +0.12  -1.07            -0.37  -22.3
 re                                                    2
 Taiwan             +0.99  +5.30            -0.63   6.64
 Thailan            +0.26  -3.92             0.66  -22.9
 d                                                     7
 

 (Reporting by Rashmi Ashok in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)
  
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