September 14, 2018 / 10:15 AM / a year ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most rise as trade war fears ease; Thailand sees best week in 6 months

    * Vietnam gains for 6th straight session
    * Philippine shares hit near 2-month closing low

    By Karthika Suresh Namboothiri
    Sept 14 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose
on Friday, with Thai shares posting their best weekly gain since
mid-March, as trade worries eased after China welcomed an
invitation from the United States for a new round of talks.
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 was up 1.2 percent and on track for its best
session since late August.
    Meanwhile, Turkey's central bank raised its benchmark rate
by a hefty 625 basis points on Thursday, thereby strengthening
the lira and boosting investor sentiment in emerging markets. 
    "The Turkish lira had affected the confidence in regional
currencies and regional economies. The surprise interest rate
hike has provided enough boost for regional markets", said Manny
Cruz, an analyst with Asiasec Equities Inc.
    Thai shares rose 0.3 percent, with Kasikornbank
and PTT Exploration and Production gaining more than
1 percent each.
    The country's finance minister said the government will aim
to lift economic growth to 5 percent this year.   
    MSCI's broad emerging market stock index which
includes Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia gained 1.3
    Indonesian stocks closed nearly 1.3 percent higher,
with Telekom Indonesia, the biggest contributor,
jumping more than 4 percent. Consumer stocks, Unilever Indonesia
 and Astra International, were up around 1.5
percent each.
    Southeast Asia's largest economy's trade balance is expected
to stay in the red in August although the size of the deficit
may have narrowed, a Reuters poll showed on Friday.
    Singapore stocks ended 1 percent higher, extending
gains for a third straight session. DBS Group Holdings
jumped 1.3 percent while United Overseas Bank Ltd
gained 0.8 percent.
    Philippine stocks, down 1.4 percent, marked their
lowest close since July 23. JG Summit ended 4 percent
lower while Jollibee Foods shed 2.9 percent.
    Thousands of Filipinos have begun evacuating the northern
coast of the main island in preparation for a super typhoon.

    "The storm, as well as the peso's steady descent in recent
weeks to multi-year lows affected market sentiment," Cruz added.
    Vietnam stocks ended 0.3 percent higher, extending
gains for a sixth straight day.
    For Asian Companies click;  

 Change on the day                            
 Market             Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3161.42   3131.77         0.95
 Bangkok            1722.21   1717.96         0.25
 Manila             7413.15   7517.37         -1.39
 Jakarta            5931.281  5858.274        1.25
 Kuala Lumpur       1803.76   1792.6          0.62
 Ho Chi Minh        991.34    987.95          0.34
 Change on year                               
 Market             Current   End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore          3161.42   3402.92         -7.10
 Bangkok            1722.21   1753.71         -1.80
 Manila             7413.15   8558.42         -13.38
 Jakarta            5931.281  6355.654        -6.68
 Kuala Lumpur       1803.76   1796.81         0.39
 Ho Chi Minh        991.34    984.24          0.72
 (Additional Reporting by Rashmi Ashok; Editing by Vyas Mohan)
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