* Rouble at its weakest since late-March
* Turkey’s lira continues to hit record lows
* EM stocks rise on positive Chinese data
Nov 2 (Reuters) - Russia’s rouble hit a more-than seven-month low on Monday as a fall in oil prices and caution ahead of the U.S. presidential elections weighed on sentiment, with most other emerging market currencies in Europe, Middle East and Africa also retreating.
The rouble plummeted 1.4% to the U.S. dollar, coming under pressure from a drop in oil prices, as a batch of new coronavirus lockdowns in Europe fuelled demand concerns.
The currency has also fallen due to investors pricing in a possible downside from Democratic candidate Joe Biden winning the U.S. election, which could increase the prospect of more U.S. sanctions against Moscow.
Meanwhile, October manufacturing activity in Russia contracted at its fastest pace in five months, as output was constrained by a surge of coronavirus cases in the country.
Turkey’s lira sank 0.7% to a sixth straight record low to the dollar, despite measures from the central bank to tighten monetary policy, including cutting banks’ borrowing limits and suspending some repo transactions.
Positive manufacturing data did little to curb the lira’s fall, as runaway inflation and strains in Ankara’s relationship with its NATO allies eroded investor faith in the currency.
“The Central Bank of Turkey (CBT) has no choice but to raise interest rates. But so far, it continues to do so using the most blunt of tools – temporary liquidity management using rate corridor operations,” Tatha Ghose, forex and emerging market analyst at Commerzbank wrote in a note.
“The use of the corridor informs market participants that CBT does not have the mandate to permanently hike the benchmark rate.”
Poland’s zloty fell slightly to the euro, as a spike in options trading indicated high volatility for the currency.
The zloty had touched a more-than 11-year low to the euro last week as massive protests against an abortion ruling and a record daily increase in coronavirus cases weighed on the currency.
New coronavirus-driven lockdowns in major European economies also weighed on central European currencies. Markets were also awaiting a Czech central bank meeting later in the week.
Emerging market stocks rose 0.7%, taking some support from positive Chinese manufacturing data. Still, the outlook for emerging markets remained subdued in the near-term, due to a resurgence in coronavirus cases and the U.S. elections.
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For RUSSIAN market report, see (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)