July 21, 2020 / 5:23 AM / 16 days ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Philippine shares trail as vaccine hopes lift Asia

    * Graphic: World FX rates tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
    * Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks tmsnrt.rs/3f2vwbA
    * Jakarta stocks track best day in nearly 2 weeks
    * Singapore stocks, Thai baht snap 3-day losing run

    By Shashwat Awasthi
    July 21 (Reuters) - Philippine stocks slipped on Tuesday as
a surge in local coronavirus cases gnawed at investor sentiment,
while most other emerging Asian markets found support from
promising data for three potential COVID-19 vaccines.
    Indonesian and Thai stocks rebounded after
Monday's drop, adding roughly 1% each, with the flood of capital
searching for higher yields globally overcoming fears about
rising coronavirus infections and political uncertainty in
Bangkok.
    Hopes that the early print from the vaccine trials meant an
effective tool against the virus was on the way, and news of a
European deal on a massive stimulus plan, led dealers away from
the U.S. dollar towards perceived riskier assets.

    Taiwan's dollar and South Korea's won
outshone peers, their respective share markets
climbed 2% and 1.5%, and other assets across most of the region
traded higher.
    Stocks in Singapore rose half a percent after three
straight sessions of losses.
    Manila's benchmark share index missed out on broader
gains after the country on Monday reported more than a thousand
new coronavirus infections for a fifth straight day.

    The index, which has already shed more than a fifth of its
value so far this year, gave up as much as 0.8%. The peso
was roughly unchanged.
    "The market is still weak despite the government's
announcement today that it is not keen on imposing stricter
quarantine measures in the capital and upbeat sentiment from
vaccine prospects and stimulus across Asia," said Jennifer Mae
V. Lomboy, a fixed income fund manager at First Metro Asset
Management.
    Investors were likely to remain on the sidelines ahead of
next Monday's State of the Nation address by President Rodrigo
Duterte, she said.
    In Thailand, Labour Minister Chatumongol Sonakul on Monday
became the sixth minister to quit Prime Minister Prayuth
Chan-ocha's government since last week, while protests against
the government and the army ramped up.
    Maybank analysts said these developments may continue to
pose drags on the baht, and suggested a recovery in the currency
may be constrained for now.
    The baht still snapped a three-day losing streak to
rise 0.3%.
    
   HIGHLIGHTS:
    
    ** Malaysia's 10-year benchmark yield is down 1.3 basis
points at 2.732%
    ** Top gainers on Thailand's SETI include Thai Film
Industries up 20%, TWZ Corporation up 16.67%
and B-52 Capital PCL up 12.5% 
    ** Top gainers on the Jakarta stock index include
Indofarma Tbk up 23.65%, Kimia Farma Tbk up
23.64% and Pelat Timah Nusantara Tbk up ​18.18%
    
    
  Asia stock indexes and currencies at 0357 GMT                                           
   COUNTRY       FX RIC     FX DAILY %   FX YTD %    INDEX    STOCKS DAILY %  STOCKS YTD %
    Japan                      +0.02       +1.30                   0.60          -3.40
    China                      -0.02       -0.43                   0.07           8.74
    India                      -0.24       -4.73                   0.94          -8.57
  Indonesia                    +0.07       -5.58                   0.88          -19.11
   Malaysia                    +0.05       -4.01                   0.42           0.47
 Philippines                   -0.01       +2.73                  -0.31          -21.54
   S.Korea                     +0.47       -3.44                   1.51           1.54
  Singapore                    -0.12       -3.30                   0.44          -18.47
    Taiwan                     +0.49       +2.33                   1.89           3.39
   Thailand                    +0.22       -5.71                   1.07          -13.11
 
 (Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi and Pranav A K in Bengaluru;
editing by Richard Pullin)
  
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