EM ASIA FX-U.S. jobs data caution pressures Asia FX; ringgit eases

Reuters

* Ringgit down vs U.S. dlr, Sing dlr on budget caution

* Philippine peso falls on dlr short-covering

* Won turns up on exporters, stop-loss dlr selling

(Adds text, updates prices)

By Jongwoo Cheon

SINGAPORE, Oct 22 (Reuters) - Most emerging Asian currencies

fell on Tuesday as investors awaited U.S. jobs data for clues on

whether the Federal Reserve will start scaling back its stimulus

this year.

The Malaysian ringgit also slid as investors cut

bullish bets abead of the country's 2014 budget on Friday.

The Philippine peso eased as investors reduced

long positions in case U.S. September payrolls number due later

in the day is stronger than expected.

U.S. non-farm payrolls are expected to have increased

180,000 last month with the jobless rate steady at 7.3 percent,

according to a Reuters poll.

A positive surprise in the jobs data could lift the dollar

and put more pressure on emerging Asian currencies, analysts and

traders said.

Still, analysts say any rise in the dollar on an upside

surprise could be limited, since the September jobs data will

shed little light on the economic impact of this month's U.S.

government shutdown.

The closure increased expectations that the Fed may keep its

bond-buying programme in place longer, helping most emerging

Asian currencies appreciate.

"A stronger figure is unlikely to change views that the Fed

may taper sooner with some expectations of its policy shift in

March," said Yuna Park, a currency and bond analyst at Dongbu

Securities in Seoul.

"Asian currencies are seen strengthening a bit more in the

fourth quarter unless the dollar sees a big rebound," Park

added.

Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles Evans told CNBC

television in an interview that it will be "tough" for the Fed

to have sufficient confidence in the strength of the U.S.

recovery by its December meeting to start scaling back its

stimulus.

RINGGIT

The ringgit fell against both to the U.S. dollar and the

Singapore dollar as investors continued to trim long positions

in the Malaysian currency before the budget.

Prime Minister Najib Razak will trim the government's hefty

subsidy bill and likely announce a new consumption tax as he

delivers a budget seen as crucial to ward off a possible credit

downgrade and reassure investors over the country's fast-growing

debt burden.

But the budget is unlikely to make drastic cuts to subsidies

that take up about a fifth of government spending, or include

deeper reforms such as reducing a bloated, but politically

influential, civil service.

The ringgit later pared some of earlier losses, while the

three-year government bond yield dipped to 3.151

percent, the lowest since June 11.

PHILIPPINE PESO

The peso eased as investors covered short positions in the

dollar before the U.S. jobs data.

A senior Philippine bank trader said the peso may weaken to

43.40 per dollar if the U.S. payroll number is stronger than

expected.

Still, the Philippine currency found relief from exporters'

demand, while government bond yields slid.

The three-year bond yield fell to 2.492 percent,

the lowest since Aug. 15. Ten- and five-year yields

also slid.

WON

The South Korean won turned higher as exporters'

month-end demand prompted short squeezes.

Foreign investors were set to extend their buying spree in

Seoul's main stock market to a record 38th consecutive

session.

The won started the local session weaker on selling from

offshore funds amid growing caution over possible intervention

by the foreign exchange authorities to stem its appreciation.

"They will defend until exporters' deals intensify," said a

senior foreign bank trader in Seoul.

CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR

Change on the day at 0440 GMT

Currency Latest bid Previous day Pct Move

Japan yen 98.30 98.18 -0.12

Sing dlr 1.2421 1.2420 -0.01

Taiwan dlr 29.406 29.482 +0.26

Korean won 1060.80 1062.20 +0.13

Baht 31.13 31.09 -0.13

Peso 43.21 43.14 -0.16

Rupiah 11335.00 11353.00 +0.16

Rupee 61.76 61.52 -0.39

Ringgit 3.1815 3.1700 -0.36

Yuan 6.0942 6.0925 -0.03

Change so far in 2013

Currency Latest bid End prev year Pct Move

Japan yen 98.30 86.79 -11.71

Sing dlr 1.2421 1.2219 -1.63

Taiwan dlr 29.406 29.136 -0.92

Korean won 1060.80 1070.60 +0.92

Baht 31.13 30.61 -1.67

Peso 43.21 41.05 -5.00

Rupiah 11335.00 9630.00 -15.04

Rupee 61.76 54.99 -10.96

Ringgit 3.1815 3.0580 -3.88

Yuan 6.0942 6.2303 +2.23

(Additional reporting by IFR Markets' Catherine Tan; Editing by

Kim Coghill)

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