March 17, 2020 / 9:52 AM / 11 days ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Stocks fall after Wall St tumble as pandemic fears weigh

* Philippines indefinitely closes stock market trading

* Wall St future reverse course to trade lower

* India shares give up gains of up to 2%

* GS slashes China growth forecast

By Susan Mathew

March 17 (Reuters) - Emerging market fell on Tuesday after Wall Street futures sharply reversed gains, as heightened fears over the economic damage of the coronavirus pandemic weighed on sentiment.

With countries increasingly resorting partial or complete shutdowns, investors are worried about the hit to economic activity.

Wall Street suffered its biggest drop since the crash of 1987 on Monday as co-ordinated efforts by central banks around the globe have done little to calm markets as the number of infections and deaths outside China continued to rise.

On Tuesday, S&P futures jumped as much as 3.8% to hit their upper limit, before erasing gains to trade about 1% lower. World stocks also gave up gains during Asian hours.

In the near-term, “we’re going to see U.S. equities setting the benchmark for risk appetite,” said Simon Harvey, FX market analyst at Monex Europe.

Philippines indefinitely closed trading in its stock market on Tuesday citing risks to traders, becoming the first country to do so. Bonds and currency trading have also been suspended with the peso set to resume trade on March 18, the country’s exchange said.

Equity indexes in Hong Kong, Poland and Johannesburg rose, but airlines pushed Turkey’s main index in to the red.

MSCI’s index of developing world stocks was at near four-year lows, down 1.1%, after sliding 6.5% on Monday.

Indonesia’s benchmark index lost 5% to lead losses in Asia. Mainland China stocks lost around 0.5% and Indian shares gave up gains of up to 2% to trade flat.

Goldman Sachs said on Tuesday that China’s economy will likely shrink 9% in the first quarter.

Against a stronger dollar, India’s rupee traded flat after the central bank held off from cutting rates. South Korea’s won lost 0.6% a day after the Bank of Korea slashed interest rates by 50 basis points.

“Rate differentials in EM are taking a backseat, with investors reluctant to pick up higher yielding debt. At the moment liquid dollar is the reigning king,” Harvey said.

Turkey’s lira dipped 0.3% touching its lowest level in 1-1/2 years.

South Africa’s rand rallied at least 1%. The central bank is expected to cut rates on Thursday, but less aggressively than its counterparts around the world.

Russia’s rouble which had risen about 1% earlier in the session, edged 0.4% lower against the dollar. A poll showed the bank is seen leaving its benchmark rate at 6% on Friday. Focus will be on the press conference after the meeting.

For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2020, see tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2020, 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 Amy Caren Daniel)

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