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EM ASIA FX-Asian currencies eke out gains as trade signals seesaw

    * S. Korean won breaks 7-day slump to lead gains
    * Peso may receive some near-term support as inflation
quickens in
Nov. - ING
    * China Nov. exports seen up slightly, data due on Sunday

 (Adds text, updates prices)
    By Devika Syamnath
    Dec 5 (Reuters) - Most Asian currencies notched only small
gains on Thursday as the run of conflicting headlines about
U.S.-China trade talks dulled emerging market appetite for risky
    U.S. President Donald Trump said talks with China were going
"very well," having only warned a day earlier that a trade deal
might not be reached until after the 2020 presidential
    "There's still underlying caution and a lack of clarity to
reverse any trade with conviction," said Vishnu Varathan, a
senior economist at Mizuho Bank. "(Investors) are biding their
time until the middle of December when you get the best-case
scenario of an interim deal or the can gets kicked down to next
    Trump has less than two weeks to make a call before a new
round of U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods comes into effect, with
his decision set to chart the course of a trade war that has
dragged on for 17 months.
    South Korea's won tacked on 0.3% and was set to
lead gains, having lost more than 1% over the previous seven
straight sessions. 
    The Philippine peso also strengthened 0.3%. The
Southeast Asian economy's inflation quickened for the first time
in six months in November, compounding expectations that the
central bank would hold interest rates at its next meeting on
Dec. 12.
    "The Peso may receive some near-term support as faster
inflation means that a BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) rate
cut is off the table for now," ING said in a note.
    China's yuan was slightly weaker after a
boomerang move in the previous session when it fell to a
5-1/2-week low before recovering all of its intraday losses on
Trump's upbeat comments.
    China's exports data, due on Sunday, is expected to have
risen for the first time in four months in November, a Reuters
poll showed, though the trade war-instigated slack in demand
suggests that a sure-footed turnaround in shipments is some way
    Thailand markets were closed for a public holiday.
    The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against
the dollar at 0602 GMT.
 Change on the day at 0602 GMT                    
 Currency               Latest bid  Previous day  Pct Move
 Japan yen              108.790     108.85        +0.06
 Sing dlr               1.362       1.3630        +0.07
 Taiwan dlr             30.483      30.508        +0.08
 Korean won             1190.800    1194.3        +0.29
 Peso                   50.820      50.96         +0.28
 Rupiah                 14075.000   14100         +0.18
 Rupee                  71.500      71.53         +0.03
 Ringgit                4.171       4.175         +0.10
 Yuan                   7.053       7.0508        -0.03
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Currency               Latest bid  End 2018      Pct Move
 Japan yen              108.790     109.56        +0.71
 Sing dlr               1.362       1.3627        +0.05
 Taiwan dlr             30.483      30.733        +0.82
 Korean won             1190.800    1115.70       -6.31
 Baht                   30.295      32.55         +7.44
 Peso                   50.820      52.47         +3.25
 Rupiah                 14075.000   14375         +2.13
 Rupee                  71.500      69.77         -2.42
 Ringgit                4.171       4.1300        -0.98
 Yuan                   7.053       6.8730        -2.55

 (Reporting by Devika Syamnath in Bengaluru; Editing by Sam