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EMERGING MARKETS-Asian stocks, currencies climb as Biden inches closer to White House

    * Graphic: World FX rates tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
    * Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks tmsnrt.rs/3lKhL5I
    * Philippine shares surge 3% to lead gains in the region
    * Indonesian economy in first recession in two decades
    * Singapore shares boosted by banks

    By Anushka Trivedi
    Nov 5 (Reuters) - Stocks and currencies in Asia's emerging
markets rose on Thursday as Democrat Joe Biden pulled ahead of
Republican rival Donald Trump and was within striking distance
of clinching a nail-biting U.S. presidential election.
    The Democratic candidate is widely seen as likely to be less
combative on trade policy and in relations with the region's
growth engine China, and investors hope that it may clear the
way for Asia's stronger recovery from the coronavirus crisis. 
    "Biden is a seasoned politician and will revert the United
States to a trajectory of more conventional foreign policies and
geopolitical manoeuvring, which is somewhat good for China and
emerging economies at large," said Mahesh Sethuraman, country
head of global sales trading at Saxo Capital Markets, Singapore.
    In the short term, however, analysts said a retreat for the
dollar was also a major driver for the region's currencies, with
the Taiwan's dollar and Indian rupee rising
1.5% and 0.6%, respectively.
    The Chinese yuan was marginally higher, while the
trade-sensitive South Korean won gained around 0.8%. 
    Philippine stocks rallied as much as 3.7%, far
outperforming their peers, to hit a more than eight-month high.
    Jennifer Lomboy, a fixed income fund manager at
FirstMetroAsset in Manila, said local investors were encouraged
by the upbeat third-quarter corporate results and after
inflation in October ticked up.
    Biden late on Wednesday predicted victory over Trump after
pivotal wins in Michigan and Wisconsin, while the Republican
incumbent sought to offset a narrowing path to re-election with
lawsuits and demands for a recount.
    Betting sites now lean heavily towards Biden, although
investors continue to worry about a long, drawn-out battle which
could delay a much-needed fiscal support for the U.S.
economy.
    Most Asian stock markets rose about 1% to 2%, with the
Singapore's benchmark gaining 2% after strong quarterly
results by the city-state's biggest lenders.
    Indonesian stocks hit a near two-month high and the
rupiah surged 1% despite data showing that Southeast
Asia's largest economy fell into a recession in more than two
decades.
    Chances of Bank Indonesia cutting rates by the end of the
year are higher as the recent rupiah appreciation allows the
central bank to refocus on weak domestic fundamentals, Goldman
Sachs analysts wrote.
    
    HIGHLIGHTS:
    ** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields fall 2.7 basis points
to 6.602%.
    ** Thailand's 10-year government bond yields slide 3 basis
points to 1.35%.
    ** Singapore shares hit a more than two-month high; DBS
Group and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp post
better-than-expected results. 
    
           Asia stock indexes and currencies at 0659 GMT
 COUNTRY      FX RIC      FX       FX     INDEX    STOCKS   STOCKS
                          DAILY %  YTD %           DAILY %  YTD %
 Japan                    +0.11    +4.06           1.73     1.90
 China                    +0.14    +4.78           1.20     8.75
 India                    +0.57    -3.96           1.39     -0.77
 Indonesia                +1.11    -3.48           2.59     -16.86
 Malaysia                 +0.34    -1.49           1.21     -6.70
 Philippines              +0.05    +4.83           2.80     -14.98
 S.Korea                  +0.84    +2.50           2.40     9.83
 Singapore                -0.03    -0.99           2.17     -20.24
 Taiwan                   +1.73    +5.59           0.40     7.68
 Thailand                 +0.32    -3.61           1.57     -21.41
 


 (Reporting by Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru; editing by
Uttaresh.V)
  
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