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EMERGING MARKETS-Emerging markets shares set to end week lower, trade concerns weigh

Fri, 7th Dec 2018 09:47

By Agamoni Ghosh and Aaron Saldanha

Dec 7 (Reuters) - Emerging markets shares snapped a three-day losing streak on Friday, taking a breather after a sharp-sell off triggered by fresh worries over trade relations between the United States and China.

Developing world currencies fared slightly better as major crude importers took temporary relief from softer oil prices after OPEC ended a meeting on Thursday without announcing a decision on crude output. Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said a decision was likely by Friday evening.

However MSCI's index for emerging stocks was set to end the week lower as doubts began to cloud earlier hopes of a U.S.-China detente.

Shares in mainland China managed to end the week higher despite Thursday's sharp fall prompted by the arrest of a top executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei at the request of the United States. Hong Kong and Taiwan stocks fell between 1.3 percent and 1.7 percent for the week.

"It's been a somewhat of a tough week for emerging markets but in general the truce in the trade dispute between the U.S. and China and somewhat better (EM) growth indicators should keep sentiment towards EM supported through the end of the year," said Per Hammarlund, chief emerging market strategist at SEB.

Markets also took a hit from an inversion in part of the U.S. yield curve and a dovish U.S. Federal Reserve this week.

"The ongoing inversion and bull steepening of the U.S. Treasury curve we think will continue to provide food for thought as markets re-price FOMC (and global) prospects for 2019," OCBC analysts said in a note.

MSCI's index for developing world currencies rose for a fourth week in a row against the dollar which was set for its biggest weekly drop in two months. The trade-exposed Chinese yuan clocked its best week since late-January.

Currencies of net crude importers including the Turkish lira , the Indian rupee and the Indonesian rupiah on Friday firmed as in oil prices fell.

In Turkey, dollar-denominated bonds of Halkbank jumped following reports that the New York prosecutor's office had withdrawn an appeal to extend the sentence of a former executive at the state-owned lender.

South Africa's rand was on track to post its worst weekly performance since early October, down 1.5 percent, after official data showed the current account deficit widened in the third quart+er and woes at state-run power firm Eskom.

The Russian rouble as well as stocks on Moscow's main index were set to end the week higher. Data showed the country's consumer price index (CPI) rose in November while the markets awaited a final decision by Russia and the OPEC on cutting global oil output.

For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2018, see For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2018, see

For TOP NEWS across emerging markets

For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see

For TURKISH market report, see

For RUSSIAN market report, see (Reporting by Agamoni Ghosh and Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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