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EMERGING MARKETS-Philippine stocks weighed down by virus surge; U.S. inflation data awaited

    * Singapore stocks on track to snap 5-day losing streak
    * Indian shares rebound after sharp decline on Monday
    * Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia equities down

    By Sameer Manekar
    April 13 (Reuters) - Philippine shares fell more than 1% on
Tuesday as concerns over rising COVID-19 cases sapped risk
appetite, while most emerging Asian currencies were muted and
stock markets mixed as investors awaited U.S. March inflation
data before making further bets.
    Rising virus cases across Asia are reviving concerns over
economic growth as potential lockdowns threaten to derail
recovery and test the limits of central banks' accommodative
policies.
    Shares in the Philippines, which is battling one of
the worst outbreaks in Asia, slid as much as 1.2%, even after
some virus-led curbs were eased on Monday.

    "Overall sentiment is still cautious even as lockdown
restrictions have already been eased," said Ruben Carlo O.
Asuncion, chief economist at Union Bank of the Philippines.
    "The market may still be looking at daily infections
count... vaccine rollout developments are also being monitored
and it is likely that the market is not yet confident about the
efficiency of vaccinations and consistency of supply."
    The Indian rupee was near an eight-month low as the
country reported the world's highest daily tally of new
coronavirus infections. Stocks, however, bounced back
from a 3% drop in the previous session to rise as much as 1%.

    India's annual retail inflation jumped to a four-month high
of 5.52% in March, data showed on Monday.
    "Despite 5.5% March inflation, we continue to expect the
Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) Monetary Policy Committee to
support recovery, especially with industry still contracting and
COVID-19 cases rising," analysts at Bank of America said in a
note.
    "RBI will continue to buy FX when the U.S. dollar weakens
and let the rupee slip towards 75/USD when it strengthens to
buffer the economy from contagion."
    Singapore shares advanced as much as 0.4% after five
straight sessions of losses, while South Korea's KOSPI
jumped to a two-month high.
    Central banks in both countries are expected to keep rates
unchanged this week.
    U.S. consumer inflation data for March due later in the day
may spur some moves, as a likely acceleration could push
Treasury yields and the dollar higher.
    Thai markets were closed for a public holiday.
    
    HIGHLIGHTS:    
    ** Indonesia's 10-year benchmark yields at 6.548%
    ** U.S. benchmark 10-year benchmark yields up 1.30 basis
points to 1.6890%
    ** S&P Dow Jones Indices removes India's Adani Ports and
Special Economic Zone from sustainability index

    
    
  Asia stock indexes and                            
 currencies at   0616 GMT                      
 COUNTRY  FX RIC        FX    FX  INDE  STOCK  STOCK
                     DAILY   YTD     X      S  S YTD
                         %     %        DAILY      %
                                            %  
 Japan               -0.22  -5.8  <.N2  +0.8   8.43
                               1  25>          
 China    <CNY=CFX   -0.05  -0.3  <.SS  -0.55  -2.28
          S>                   5  EC>          
 India               +0.00  -2.6  <.NS   0.12   2.48
                               6  EI>          
 Indones             -0.07  -3.8  <.JK  -0.72  -1.23
 ia                            4  SE>          
 Malaysi             -0.05  -2.7  <.KL  -0.48  -1.63
 a                             3  SE>          
 Philipp             -0.01  -1.1  <.PS  -0.93  -9.55
 ines                          0  I>           
 S.Korea  <KRW=KFT   -0.18  -3.6  <.KS   0.99  10.20
          C>                   1  11>          
 Singapo             -0.09  -1.5  <.ST   0.24  11.88
 re                            7  I>           
 Taiwan              -0.01  +0.0  <.TW  -0.21  14.20
                               7  II>          
 Thailan              0.00  -4.8  <.SE   0.00   6.33
 d                             6  TI>          
 

 (Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon
Cameron-Moore and Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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