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EMERGING MARKETS-Thailand gains after govt adds tax deduction to stimulus push

    * Thai shares eye fourth straight session of gain
    * Most currencies in region subdued; Taiwan dollar up about
1%
    * Chinese markets reopen after a week-long holiday on Friday

    By Shruti Sonal
    Oct 8 (Reuters) - Thai stocks climbed nearly 1% on Thursday
as the government took measures to boost consumption in its
coronavirus-battered economy, leading gains across a handful of
Asia's big emerging markets.
    With markets globally eyeing a tumultuous U.S. election
campaign and roadblocks in passing stimulus in the world's
biggest economy, currencies across the region were subdued, with
the Taiwan dollar again the main standout, rising almost 1%.
    Thailand's benchmark index hit its highest in over
two weeks after officials added a tax deduction on purchases of
goods and services to cash handouts and subsidies announced last
month.
    Deputy Prime Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow said
altogether the measures would push about 200 billion baht ($6.4
billion) into the economy in the last three months of this year.
    The tourist-heavy economy has started receiving its first
visitors this week after months of travel curbs and its markets
have proven relatively immune to growing protests against the
army-backed government. 
    "Overall, the outlook for the country's economy in the first
quarter should be better," said Sunthorn Thongthip, a
Thailand-based strategist at Kasikorn Securities.
    In the second big public launch this year, Thailand's Siam
Cement Group Packaging Pcl (SCGP) was set to raise up to $1.5
billion after pricing shares for its initial offering at the top
end of its range.
    Reports overnight of the Trump administration exploring
restrictions on China's Ant Group and Tencent Holdings
over national security concerns weighed on sentiment in
trade-reliant Singapore, said Kelvin Wong, an analyst at CMC
Markets.
    "The news can explain the negative feedback on the Singapore
markets given that we have significant relations with China and
most of the Chinese tech firms have set up their operational
hubs in Singapore," added Wong.
    Markets in China, the region's biggest market and main
engine of growth, reopen after a week-long holiday on Friday. 
    Malaysia, where markets have settled after the
government dented opposition efforts to take over by winning a
recent election, gained 0.5%. 
    In Indonesia, stocks edged 0.2% higher as other
major stock markets improved overnight. 
    Philippine stocks, which have been hit as the economy
struggled with coronavirus restrictions, reversed losses earlier
in the session and edged up, while Singapore's benchmark
shed 0.1%. 

    
    HIGHLIGHTS: 
    
    ** Most currencies in region subdued; Taiwan dollar up about
1%
    ** Philippine budget carrier Cebu Air Inc plans to
raise roughly $500 million to weather the pandemic
    ** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields up 0.3 basis points
at 6.899%
    

  Asia stock indexes and currencies                               
 at 0343 GMT                                             
 COUNTRY    FX RIC        FX   FX YTD    INDEX   STOCKS     STOCKS
                       DAILY        %           DAILY %      YTD %
                           %                             
 Japan                 -0.03    +2.47            1.01      0.01
                                                                  
 India                 -0.04    -2.70              0.00      -3.53
 Indonesia             -0.07    -5.58              0.18     -20.41
 Malaysia              +0.05    -1.54              0.52      -5.76
 Philippin             +0.17    +4.69             -0.61     -25.38
 es                                                      
 S.Korea    <KRW=KFT   +0.03    -0.12              0.41       9.05
            C>                                           
 Singapore             +0.01    -1.08             -0.13     -21.34
 Taiwan                +0.83    +4.80              0.96       7.27
 Thailand              +0.03    -4.20              0.85     -19.33
 
 (Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru; Editing by Patrick
Graham and Christopher Cushing)
  
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