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EM ASIA FX-Firmer ahead of Fed, BOJ decisions; rupiah leads on finmin appointment

* Indonesia's Jokowi brings World Bank exec back as finmin
    * Indonesia currency, stocks, bonds rise

 (Adds text, updates prices)
    By Jongwoo Cheon
    SINGAPORE, July 27 (Reuters) - Most emerging Asian
currencies rose slightly in volatile trade on Wednesday, ahead
of central banks meetings in the United States and Japan, as
well as expectations of massive economic stimulus from Tokyo.
    The Indonesian rupiah led regional gains as local
stocks and bonds rose as President Joko Widodo appointed World
Bank managing director Sri Mulyani Indrawati the country's new
finance minister. The appointment raised hopes of further
improvement in the country's fiscal position. 
    Most emerging Asian currencies started the day firmer as
regional stocks climbed to fresh one-year highs. But they
briefly turned direction as the yen fell on media report 
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will announce an economic stimulus
package worth 27 trillion yen ($255 billion). Abe later said his
government would compile a stimulus package of more than $265
billion, another media reported. 
    Regional currencies rebounded as the yen recovered some of
its losses after the finance ministry denied another report that
it was mulling the launch of 50-year government bonds.
 
    Those reports came amid expectations the Bank of Japan may
announce further monetary stimulus on Friday, although some
market watchers say what the BOJ will do is too close to call. 
    If the central bank further eases policy, that will give
investors more ammunition to hunt for higher yields in emerging
Asian countries, analysts said.
    The U.S. Federal Reserve was also expected to keep interest
rates unchanged this week, deferring any possible increase until
September or December, even as investors were closely awaiting
any hints for a hike. The Fed started a two-day policy meeting
on Tuesday. 
    "In the coming weeks, we expect EM Asian currencies to
strengthen after the Fed and the BOJ meetings," said Qi Gao, an
emerging Asian currency strategist for Scotiabank in Singapore.
    "The Fed may say U.S. macro is improving, however, it could
mention global economic and financial uncertainty as well.
Maintaining odds of the Fed rate hikes at a certain level is in
the Fed's interest, but the Fed is less likely to tighten
aggressively."
    Still, some analysts expected only some emerging Asian
currencies to benefit from such easier monetary policies.
    Recent gains in regional units, especially after Britain's
vote to leave the European Union, were seen as excessive, they
added.
    "Some of the post-Brexit gains are overdone. Some of them
like KRW and TWD may weaken," said Nordea Markets' senior
analyst Amy Yuan Zhuang in Singapore. South Korea and Taiwan
compete against Japan in export markets.
    But the Thai baht could strengthen if the BOJ
eases, as the country supplies goods to Japan, she said.
    
    RUPIAH
    The rupiah gained as financial markets welcomed the
appointment of Indrawati as Indonesia's new finance minister.
    Jakarta stocks jumped more than 1 percent, outpacing
regional peers. Most government bond prices rose.
    "Sri Mulyani is the right person. For Indonesian people, she
is like Janet Yellen," said a currency trader in Jakarta,
referring to the Fed chief.
    The trader expected more capital inflows with the
appointment, saying the new minister may be better able to
tackle fiscal problems than the current Bambang Brodjonegoro.
    Still, caution grew over possible intervention by the
central bank to stem further strength in the second-best
performing emerging Asian currency so far this year, traders
said.
    The central bank was suspected of defending the 13,080-per-
dollar level recently, they added.
    
    CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR
    Change on the day at 0605 GMT
  Currency                Latest bid   Previous day   Pct Move
  Japan yen                   105.48         104.65      -0.79
  Sing dlr                    1.3574         1.3586      +0.09
  Taiwan dlr                  32.046         32.106      +0.19
  Korean won                 1133.93        1134.90      +0.09
  Baht                         35.01          35.01      +0.00
  Peso                        47.160         47.130      -0.06
  Rupiah                       13115          13165      +0.38
  Rupee                        67.26          67.27      +0.02
  Ringgit                     4.0720         4.0580      -0.34
  Yuan                        6.6699         6.6747      +0.07
                                                              
  Change so far in 2016                                       
  Currency                Latest bid  End prev year   Pct Move
  Japan yen                   105.48         120.30     +14.05
  Sing dlr                    1.3574         1.4177      +4.44
  Taiwan dlr                  32.046         33.066      +3.18
  Korean won                 1133.93        1172.50      +3.40
  Baht                         35.01          36.00      +2.83
  Peso                         47.16          47.06      -0.21
  Rupiah                       13115          13785      +5.11
  Rupee                        67.26          66.15      -1.65
  Ringgit                     4.0720         4.2935      +5.44
  Yuan                        6.6699         6.4936      -2.64
 
 (Reporting by Jongwoo Cheon; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
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