* Vietnam posts lowest close in nearly 3 weeks * Philippines snaps three consecutive sessions of losses * Indonesian presidential elections on April 17 By Shreya Mariam Job April 16 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets ended higher on Tuesday, with Indonesia leading the pack, as investors remained optimistic about a recovery in China's economy ahead of the country's first-quarter growth pace set to be released on Wednesday. First-quarter economy growth in China, the region's largest trading partner, likely cooled to the weakest pace in at least 27 years, a Reuters poll showed, but a flurry of measures to boost domestic demand may have put a floor under slowing activity in March. "With a sizeable 4 trillion Chinese yuan ($596.42 billion) fiscal stimulus and a monetary easing policy that has created 40 percent credit growth in 1Q19 alone, we expect the Chinese economy to grow above the 6 percent lower boundary target set by the government," according to a note from ING. Indonesian stocks led gains in the region with broad-based increase across the sectors as investors snapped up stocks ahead of the presidential elections on Wednesday. President Joko Widodo is standing for re-election in a contest with ex-general Prabowo Subianto, in what is described as the world's biggest single-day election. Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk Pt and Astra International Tbk Pt were the top boosts to the index rising 3.7 percent and 2 percent, respectively. An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks rose 1.1 percent. Philippine stocks pared earlier gains to close 0.5 percent higher, snapping three consecutive sessions of losses, on the back of real estate and industrial stocks. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday signed a 3.7 trillion peso ($71.5 billion) budget for this year, its largest ever, ending months of impasse that forced the Southeast Asian country to cuts its growth target. Shares of SM Investments Corp gained 1.9 percent, while those in SM Prime Holdings Inc firmed 2.4 percent. Meanwhile, the Vietnam index closed down 0.6 percent at its lowest closing level since March 27, dragged by real estate stocks. Vinhomes JSC and Vincom Retail JSC dropped more than 2 percent each. Thai market was closed for a holiday. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Market Current Previous close Pct Move Singapore 3332.04 3325.86 0.19 Manila 7826.46 7787.98 0.49 Jakarta 6481.541 6435.151 0.72 Kuala Lumpur 1629.46 1631.33 -0.11 Ho Chi Minh 977.17 982.9 -0.58 Change so far in 2019 Market Current End 2018 Pct Move Singapore 3332.04 3068.76 8.58 Manila 7826.46 7,466.02 4.83 Jakarta 6481.541 6,194.50 4.63 Kuala Lumpur 1629.46 1690.58 -3.62 Ho Chi Minh 977.17 892.54 9.48 ($1 = 6.7067 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by xxxx)
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.