August 22, 2016 / 10:22 AM / 2 years ago

SE Asia Stocks-Fed rate hike bets weigh on sentiment; Philippines up

By Krishna V Kurup
    Aug 22 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets closed
little changed on Monday after comments from Fed officials
prompted more bets on a U.S. rate hike by the end of this year,
while investors trod carefully ahead of a meeting of central
bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming later this week.
    Fed Chair Janet Yellen will speak at the annual mountain
retreat of central bankers on Friday, with markets watching
closely for comments on the U.S. economy.
    On Sunday, Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer gave a
generally upbeat assessment of the U.S. economy's current
strength, saying the job market was close to full strength and
still improving. 
    New York Fed President William Dudley had said last week a
rate hike would be possible at the Fed's next policy meeting in
    Markets are reacting to Fed official's comments "pointing to
a possible rate hike towards the end of the year" which "has
sparked apprehensions on the regional equities," said Manny
Cruz, an analyst with Manila-based Asiasec Equities.
    Philippine shares closed 0.6 percent higher, boosted
by financials and telecoms. SM Prime Holdings Inc rose
1.2 percent, while PLDT Inc gained 1.15 percent.
    The Philippine market is moving sideways in the absence of
fresh developments, Cruz said, adding that the market was
expected to confine in a range of 7,900-8,050 this week.
    The central bank has sufficient policy space to counter
risks to economic growth and ample liquidity and credit to
support the economy, a deputy governor said on
    Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte would stick to deficit
spending until he steps down in 2022 to ensure sustainable
economic growth beyond his six-year term, his budget minister
told lawmakers on Monday. 
    Vietnam shares ended 0.7 percent lower, dragged down
by consumer non-cyclicals and industrials. Vietnam Dairy
Products JSC fell 2.1 percent, while Cotec Construction
JSC was down 1.3 percent. 
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 was down 0.4 percent at 0930 GMT.

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  STOCK MARKETS                                        
  Change on day                                        
  Market           Current       Prev close   Pct Move
  Singapore        2841.19       2844.02      -0.10
  Bangkok          1539.24       1538.76      0.03
  Manila           7981.21       7930.75      0.64
  Jakarta          5427.175      5416.035     0.21
  Kuala Lumpur     1691.07       1687.68      0.20
  Ho Chi Minh      657.68        662.28       -0.69
  Change on year                              
  Market           Current       End 2015     Pct Move
  Singapore        2841.19       2882.73      -1.44
  Bangkok          1539.24       1288.02      19.50
  Manila           7981.21       6952.08      14.80
  Jakarta          5427.175      4593.008     18.16
  Kuala Lumpur     1691.07       1692.51      -0.09
  Ho Chi Minh      657.68        579.03       13.58

 (Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
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