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EMERGING MARKETS-Russian rouble slides on U.S. sanctions threats; c.bank decisions eyed

    * U.S. report shows Russian meddling in 2020 U.S. elections 
    * Biden says Putin "will pay the price," rouble slides up to
1.5%
    * Fed, Brazil central bank decision eyed
    * Brazilian real extends losses to fourth day

 (Updates after Biden comments on Russia, adds Latam prices)
    By Susan Mathew
    March 17 (Reuters) - Russia's rouble slumped more than 1% on
Wednesday, putting it on track for its worst one-day sell-off in
three weeks after, U.S. President Joe Biden's strong rhetoric
against Russian President Vladimir Putin regarding 2020 U.S.
Presidential elections.
    "He will pay a price," Biden told ABC News in an interview
that aired on Wednesday. A U.S. intelligence report on Tuesday
bolstered longstanding allegations that Putin directed efforts
to swing the election to Donald Trump, and sources said
sanctions on Russian could come as soon as next week.
 
    The rouble deepened looses to hit session lows as was
last trading at 73.87 against the greenback. Russian
dollar-denominated bonds fell across the curve with the
longer-dated bonds such as the 2042 and 2047
 issues losing some 1.6 cents, according to
Refinitiv data.
    "The comments from Biden were a lot more aggressive than
what markets were anticipating," said Simon Harvey, FX analyst
at Monex Europe, adding that the market now expects broad-based
and more targeted economic sanctions towards domestic markets
than previously imposed. 
    The latest threat comes after the United States and European
Union imposed sanctions, albeit limited, over the alleged
poisoning of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. 
    "Our structural view on (the) rouble is positive, we expect
the CBR to hike and see stable economic fundamentals, but these
periods of political risk pose a short term hurdle to our view,
especially depending on how extensive and prolonged are they
going to be and how much the relationship between the two
countries suffer."
    In broader emerging markets, the focus was on whether the
U.S. Federal Reserve will signal policy tightening earlier than
anticipated. MSCI's index of EM currencies was
down 0.2%, while the stocks counterpart slipped 0.6%,
both down for a third day in four.
    The dollar held steady ahead of the Fed decision due at 2
p.m. ET. Eyes will be on the reaction of U.S. Treasury yields
which hit new 13-month highs running up to the decision.

    Brazil's real extended losses to a fourth
straight session, down 0.7%. Brazil's central bank is expected
to hike interest rates for the first time in six years as
inflation surges. The government on Wednesday sharply raised its
inflation outlook for this year to 4.4% from 3.2%.
    "Anything less than a 50 basis points rate hike ... would
probably be seen as a disappointment by the market, putting
pressure on (real)," said Commerzbank FX and EM analyst Melanie
Fischinger. 
    The real is among the worst performing EM currencies
year-to-date, down 8%, thanks to worries about fiscal spending,
political interference and rising inflation. 

Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1328 GMT:   
  Stock indexes           Latest   Daily %
                                   change
 MSCI Emerging Markets    1340.51    -0.63
                                   
 MSCI LatAm               2283.10     -1.2
                                   
 Brazil Bovespa         113567.36     -0.4
                                   
 Mexico IPC                     -        -
                                   
 Chile IPSA               4887.45    -0.36
                                   
 Argentina MerVal               -        -
                                   
 Colombia COLCAP                -        -
                                   
                                          
      Currencies          Latest   Daily %
                                   change
 Brazil real               5.6567    -0.73
                                   
 Mexico peso              20.7334    -0.54
                                   
 Chile peso                 732.9    -0.82
                                   
 Colombia peso            3575.73    -0.50
                                   
 Peru sol                  3.7008    -0.03
                                   
 Argentina peso           91.2000    -0.07
 (interbank)                       
                                   
 

        
For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance in 2021, see tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh

For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance in 2021, see tmsnrt.rs/2OusNdX
    
    For TOP NEWS across emerging markets
    For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see
    For TURKISH market report, see
    For RUSSIAN market report, see

 (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
Sahu and Nick Zieminski)
  
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