April 16, 2019 / 9:05 AM / 2 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Stocks gain as China economic data power rally

* Mainland China stocks leads emerging-market gains

* MSCI EM index headed for biggest one-day rise in three weeks

* Turkey’s lira up after three days of losses

By Susan Mathew

April 16 (Reuters) - Emerging-market shares rose on Tuesday as encouraging data from China eased fears that the world’s second-largest economy was weakening.

Gains of more than 2 percent in mainland China shares were the biggest boost to MSCI’s index of emerging market shares, which rose half a percent and was on course for its biggest one-day gain in three weeks.

Data on Tuesday showing a faster rise in housing prices in March was the main reason for the day’s rally, said Morten Lund, an analyst at Nordea Markets, by suggesting China’s stimulus efforts are translating into stronger growth.

That report came after strong Chinese export and banking data last week and sets the stage for first-quarter economic growth data on Wednesday. A Reuters poll forecast that growth slowed to its weakest in at least 27 years, but stimulus is expected to help it recover.

Most stock indices across the developing world rose, with shares in Hong Kong up 1 percent. Turkish stocks rose for the first time in five days, up 1.5 percent.

Among emerging-market currencies, South Africa’s rand , Russia’s rouble and Turkey’s lira gained more than 0.1 percent each.

The lira rose after declining three straight days. Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak held talks with U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday and said Trump took a “reasonable” stance regarding Turkey’s planned purchase of a Russian air defence missile system.

Ankara’s plan to buy the system had fuelled tensions between the NATO allies, and Washington said Ankara could face sanctions over the issue. Deteriorating diplomatic relations with United States has been one of the factors pressuring the lira recently.

For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2019, see tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2019, 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 Larry King)

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