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EMERGING MARKETS-Emerging stocks, FX jump as French vote whets risk appetite
April 24, 2017 / 9:29 AM / 5 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Emerging stocks, FX jump as French vote whets risk appetite

LONDON, April 24 (Reuters) - Emerging assets shifted up a gear on Monday as markets cheered the French election results, pushing developing stocks to a near-three week high and sending most emerging currencies surging against the dollar and euro.

Sunday’s election saw centrist and market favourite Emmanuel Macron take a big stride towards the French presidency, winning the first round and lining up a showdown against far-right leader Marine Le Pen in a May 7 run-off vote.

Victory for the pro-European Union ex-banker in the opening round soothed nerves over the future of the bloc and its single currency, and whetted investors’ appetite for riskier assets.

MSCI’s emerging market index extended gains into a third day and rose 0.5 percent as bourses across Asia , Europe and Africa chalked up solid gains.

Currencies also firmed as the dollar suffered its biggest one-day loss in more than a month, weakening around 1 percent. South Africa’s rand proved the star performer, jumping nearly 2 percent to its strongest level in three weeks.

“The big conclusion here is that the ‘risk-on’ theory may get better support this week,” said Luis Costa, the head of CEEMEA debt and FX strategy at Citi.

“This is good for carry currencies in general...The markets may remain in a reasonably sweet spot whereby EM growth shows signs of some improvement.”

Turkey’s lira and Mexico’s peso both gained more than one percent with Russia’s rouble strengthened 0.9 percent, reflecting a similar rise in oil prices.

Across central and emerging Europe, currencies and stocks also basked in the glow of the French results, with the threat of a second round between the anti-globalisation candidates Le Pen and the hard-left’s Jean-Luc Melenchon averted.

Jakob Christensen, head of EM research at Danske Bank, said the risk of a wider EU crisis under a far-right president now looked much slimmer.

A Le Pen presidency “would have raised doubts about the EU structural fund transfers to Eastern Europe,” Christensen said.

He noted Poland was the biggest net receiver of EU funds and Hungary the biggest in per capita terms.

Stocks in Warsaw rose 1.4 percent while those in Prague added 1.2 percent. The zloty and the crown strengthened around 0.5 percent against the euro.

Chinese assets were the exception however, with stocks tumbling more than 1 percent for their worst day this year on signs Beijing is willing to tolerate market volatility amid a regulatory clampdown on shadow banking and speculative trading. The yuan weakened 0.2 percent.

For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2017, see tmsnrt.rs/2e7eoml For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2017, see tmsnrt.rs/2dZbdP5

Emerging Markets Prices from Reuters Equities Latest Net Chg % Chg % Chg

on year

Morgan Stanley Emrg Mkt Indx 968.99 +7.21 +0.75 +12.38

Czech Rep 989.27 +11.40 +1.17 +7.34

Poland 2295.49 +31.42 +1.39 +17.84

Hungary 33222.61 +253.17 +0.77 +3.81

Romania 8289.58 +56.74 +0.69 +17.00

Greece 681.13 +9.56 +1.42 +5.82

Russia 1107.10 +22.93 +2.11 -3.93

South Africa 45738.60 +237.62 +0.52 +4.18

Turkey 93146.14 +722.21 +0.78 +19.21

China 3129.78 -43.38 -1.37 +0.84

India 29649.50 +284.20 +0.97 +11.35

Currencies Latest Prev Local Local

close currency currency

% change % change

in 2017

Czech Rep 26.78 26.92 +0.52 +0.85

Poland 4.24 4.26 +0.55 +3.91

Hungary 311.74 312.55 +0.26 -0.94

Romania 4.53 4.53 -0.05 +0.03

Serbia 123.25 123.25 +0.00 +0.08

Russia 55.97 56.44 +0.85 +9.46

Kazakhstan 311.59 313.24 +0.53 +7.08

Ukraine 26.71 26.68 -0.11 +1.09

South Africa 12.89 13.12 +1.79 +6.50

Kenya 103.15 103.30 +0.15 -0.76

Israel 3.65 3.67 +0.58 +5.55

Turkey 3.60 3.64 +1.06 -2.06

China 6.89 6.88 -0.02 +0.83

India 64.45 64.63 +0.28 +5.42

Brazil 3.15 3.15 +0.00 +3.36

Mexico 18.55 18.80 +1.35 +11.66

Debt Index Strip Spd Chg %Rtn Index

Sov‘gn Debt EMBIG 324 -7 .00 7 77.88 1

All data taken from Reuters at 08:52 GMT. Currency percent change calculated from the daily U.S. close at 2130 GMT.

For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see

For TURKISH market report, see

For RUSSIAN market report, see) (Additional reporting by Sujata Rao and Claire Milhench; editing by Richard Lough)

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