EMERGING MARKETS-Dim recovery prospects dent won; stocks gain on COVID-19 treatment hopes

    * Graphic: World FX rates
    * Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks
    * Indonesian rupiah, Taiwan dollar sole gainers among Asia
    * Indian shares on track for a second straight day of gains
    * S. Korean end up more than 1% 

    By Shriya Ramakrishnan
    Aug 24 (Reuters) - The South Korean won was the worst hit
among Asian currencies as the dollar steadied on Monday, while
stock markets across the region clocked modest gains on hopes
for a potential COVID-19 treatment. 
    Some of the foreign exchange market's big players have begun
to suggest the dollar's slide since May may be overdone and
upbeat U.S. data on Friday along with signs of progress on
coronavirus vaccines reinforced that view.
    The Thai baht, Singapore dollar and
Malaysian ringgit were all flat to lower against the
    "Clearly the unequivocal bearish USD theme has been
surrendered to underlying uncertainties (virus resurgence as
well as U.S.-China conflict)," analysts at Mizuho Bank said in a
    In South Korea, the won slid as much as 0.5%
before regaining some ground, after its central bank chief
warned that a recent surge in COVID-19 infections within the
country will likely weaken economic recovery.
    Shares in Seoul, however, closed 1.1% higher, helped
by gains in pharmaceutical stocks. 
    The week is set to be dominated by the U.S. Federal
Reserve's annual Jackson Hole conference which begins on
Thursday in a virtual form. 
    Investors have been eagerly awaiting details on possible
changes to how the Fed targets inflation.
    While global investors cheered the U.S. drug regulator's
authorisation of the use of blood plasma from recovered patients
as a COVID-19 treatment option, concerns about a continued spike
in infections capped gains.
    Manila's benchmark stock index fell more than 1%,
while Malaysian shares were down 0.5%.
    Foreign investors have pulled out $1.62 billion worth of
Philippine equities year-to-date, the biggest outflow since at
least 11 years for the same period. 
    The Philippines reported its smallest daily rise in new
coronavirus infections in nearly four weeks on Sunday, but the
nationwide tally was still the highest in Southeast Asia.

    India's blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index was set for a
second straight day of gains, even as domestic virus cases
crossed 3 million.
    Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das warned
on Friday that India's stock market, which has rebounded
significantly from multi-year lows in March, was not in sync
with the real economy and would likely see a correction although
he could not say when.
    ** Malaysia's 10-year benchmark yield is up 2.3 basis points
at 2.556%, while its 3-year benchmark yield is up 2 basis points
at 1.842%
    ** Top losers on FTSE Bursa Malaysia Kl Index
include IHH Healthcare Bhd down 3.23% at 5.4 ringgit;
PETRONAS Chemicals Group Bhd down 2.93% at 5.96
ringgit; Hartalega Holdings Bhd down 2.37% at 17.32
    ** Top losers on the Singapore STI include: Thai
Beverage PCL down 1.61% at S$0.61; Oversea-Chinese
Banking Corp Ltd down 0.69% at S$8.62; Yangzijiang
Shipbuilding Holdings Ltd down 0.54% at S$2.77
  Asia stock indexes and                                 
 currencies at   0718 GMT                          
                      DAILY  YTD %              S   YTD %
                          %                 DAILY  
 Japan                -0.08  +2.60  <.N225   0.28   -2.84
 China     <CNY=CFXS  +0.03  +0.67  <.SSEC   0.15   11.00
           >                        >              
 India                +0.07  -4.56  <.NSEI   0.88   -5.73
 Indonesi             +0.31  -5.74  <.JKSE   0.04  -16.26
 a                                  >              
 Malaysia             +0.07  -2.08  <.KLSE  -0.51   -1.23
 Philippi             +0.12  +4.28          -1.03  -23.95
 S.Korea   <KRW=KFTC  -0.24  -2.75  <.KS11   1.10    6.01
           >                        >              
 Singapor             +0.04  -1.88           0.58  -21.09
 Taiwan               +0.45  +2.47  <.TWII   0.31    5.42
 Thailand             +0.00  -5.14  <.SETI   0.76  -17.14

 (Reporting by Shriya Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru; Additional
reporting by Gaurav Dogra; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)