EMERGING MARKETS-Mexican peso hits 8-month high as Biden leads in tight election race

    * Mexican peso rises for third straight day
    * Brazil's real jumps after encouraging services PMI
    * Russian rouble gains, Hungarian forint leads among CEE FX
    * EM stocks touch highest level since May 2018

    By Shreyashi Sanyal
    Nov 5 (Reuters) - Mexico's peso touched its highest level in
nearly eight months against a weakening dollar on Thursday,
while emerging market stocks hit multi-year highs as Democratic
candidate Joe Biden maintained a narrow lead in a tight U.S.
election race. 
    The peso rose for the third straight day, jumping
over 1% with a Biden victory seen as positive for the currency,
which has suffered from President Donald Trump's hard line on
trade in recent years.  
    The election race is coming down to close contests in five
states with Biden narrowly ahead of Trump in some key
battleground states, as mail-in and absentee votes were being
    "The U.S. presidential election race is getting closer to
calling it for Biden, but a drawn-out election fight with
recounts and legal disputes could mean final results won’t
happen until early December," said Edward Moya, senior market
analyst at OANDA.
    Brazil's real jumped 1.6% after a purchasing
managers' survey showed the country's services sector expanded
in October at the fastest rate since January, driving the
strongest private sector growth in Latin America's largest
economy in over a decade.
    The real has fallen 27% so far this year, with record low
interest rates adding pressure on the currency.
    Emerging market currencies also got a lift from a fading
dollar which was headed for its biggest three-day drop
since March ahead of the outcome of a U.S. Federal Reserve
policy meeting that might hint at more stimulus.
    The Russian rouble was among the smallest of gainers,
rising just 0.2% as traders returned from a public holiday on
Wednesday. Russia has benefited from Trump's commitment to oil
and close ties with President Vladimir Putin.   
    "The Russian currency is closer to fair value, which we see
in the 70-75 range," analysts at ING wrote.
    "However, obstacles to this include lingering uncertainty
over the U.S. election, the risk of increased oil supply, and,
most recently, lower than expected FX sales."
    South Africa's rand firmed against the dollar, while
Hungary's forint led gains across central European
currencies with a 1.1% jump against the euro.
    Emerging market stocks hit their highest level
since May 2018, with bourses in Russia, South Africa
 and Brazil rising between 2.5% and 3%. The
MSCI's index of emerging market stocks was set for its best day
since July.    
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1424 GMT:
         Stock indexes                 Latest   Daily %
 MSCI Emerging Markets                 1165.27     2.64
 MSCI LatAm                            1947.05     2.99
 Brazil Bovespa                       99779.73     1.95
 Mexico IPC                               0.00        0
 Chile IPSA                            3522.63     0.13
 Argentina MerVal                     47602.88    1.222
 Colombia COLCAP                       1156.41        0
            Currencies                 Latest   Daily %
 Brazil real                            5.5621     1.68
 Mexico peso                           20.6920     1.01
 Chile peso                              752.7     0.19
 Colombia peso                         3766.99     1.24
 Peru sol                               3.5887     0.31
 Argentina peso (interbank)            79.0800    -0.06
 Argentina peso (parallel)                 157     5.10
 (Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirsten

Nuestros Estándares: Los principios Thomson Reuters.