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EMERGING MARKETS-Asian stocks ease on profit taking, spike in virus cases

    * Graphic: World FX rates tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
    * Graphic: Foreign flows into Asian stocks tmsnrt.rs/3lKhL5I
    * Thai stocks set for best month since Dec. 2003
    * Indonesia shares track best month since Sept. 2010
    * India, Philippines stock markets shut

    By Shashwat Awasthi
    Nov 30 (Reuters) - Most emerging Asian stock markets fell on
Monday as coronavirus cases across the region continued to
surge, and investors booked profits at the end of a stellar
month of gains underpinned by optimism about an effective
COVID-19 vaccine.
    Indonesia on Sunday reported a record rise in daily virus
cases for the third time in a week, Hong Kong recorded its
highest case count in four months, and infections in South Korea
also jumped.
    Jakarta stocks dropped as much as 0.7% and were on
track for their worst day in more than two weeks, and the rupiah
 eased after three straight sessions of gains.
    The KOSPI gave up half a percent, while shares in
tourism-reliant Thailand snapped a three-day winning run to
 tumble 1%.
    "Asia-Pacific stocks trade broadly lower on the last trading
day in November, retracing from recent highs. A vaccine-led
rally appears to be overstretched, calling for profit-taking,"
said Margaret Yang, a strategist at Singapore-based DailyFX.
    Despite the losses, many regional markets were set to record
their best monthly performance in years as positive efficacy
data from COVID-19 vaccine trials and hopes of more central bank
stimulus support expectations of an economic rebound.
    "Vaccines offer the promise that the major disruptions of
the pandemic will fade from the scene in 2021," Frederic
Neumann, co-head of Asian Economics Research at HSBC, wrote.
    "Central bankers have signalled greater tolerance for
'inflation overshoots' than in the past. Potential fiscal
constraints and the lasting scars from an unprecedented growth
disruption surely point to a continuation of loose policies."
    Signs that a recovery was underway were strengthened by data
that showed China's November factory activity expanded at the
fastest pace in more than three years, pushing Chinese shares
 to their highest since mid-July.
    Analysts warned, however, that a spike in virus cases could
still hamper future growth.
    "Though the data is not bad for November, we believe that
the spread of COVID-19 in the rest of the world will continue to
limit export orders and delivery of export orders in December if
there are lockdowns in the export destinations," analysts at
Dutch bank ING said in a note.
    Trading in most regional currencies was muted, even as the
U.S. dollar plumbed more than two-year lows.
    
    HIGHLIGHTS:
    
    ** Indonesian 3-year benchmark yields are up 17.8 basis
points at 5.021%
    ** Top losers on Thailand's SETI include Wyncoast Industrial
Park down 11.76%, NEP Realty and Industry down
7.41% and Luxury Real Estate Investment Fund down
5.76%
    ** Top losers on the Jakarta stock index include Bali
Towerindo Sentra down 6.99%, Nusantara Pelabuhan
Handal down 6.98% and Binakarya Jaya Abadi
down 6.9%
    
    
  Asia stock indexes and currencies                 
            at 0410 GMT                           
 COUNTRY   FX RIC     FX    FX YTD   INDE  STOCK  STOC
                    DAILY      %      X      S     KS
                      %                    DAILY  YTD
                                             %     %
  Japan             +0.17    +4.54   <.N2  0.03   12.6
                                     25>           7
  China   <CNY=CFX  -0.15    +5.74   <.SS  1.07   12.9
             S>                      EC>           4
  India             -0.07    -3.52   <.NS  0.00   6.58
                                     EI>          
 Indones            -0.07    -1.42   <.JK  -0.64  -8.7
   ia                                SE>           9
 Malaysi            +0.02    +0.57   <.KL  0.17   1.36
    a                                SE>          
 Philipp            +0.00    +5.28   <.PS  0.00   -13.
  ines                                I>           10
 S.Korea  <KRW=KFT  -0.12    +4.70   <.KS  -0.41  19.3
             C>                      11>           4
 Singapo            +0.11    +0.56   <.ST  -0.50  -11.
   re                                 I>           83
 Taiwan             -0.04    +4.45   <.TW  0.04   15.6
                                     II>           3
 Thailan            +0.17    -1.19   <.SE  -1.07  -9.9
    d                                TI>           6
 
 (Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Stephen
Coates)
  
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