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SE Asia Stocks-Firmer on optimism over US budget deal

Oct 11 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets firmed up

on Friday as optimism over progress in Washington to avert a

possible debt default helped to boost sentiment for risky assets

in the region.

President Barack Obama and Republican leaders appeared ready

to end a political crisis that has shuttered much of the U.S.

government and pushed the country dangerously close to a


By 0644 GMT, the Philippines main stock index was up

1 percent to a three-week high while Singapore's Straits Times

index, which is heading for its first weekly gain in

the last three weeks, traded 0.7 percent firmer at a more-than

one-week high.

Thailand's main index was up 0.5 percent, trading at

its highest level in two weeks.

"Sentiment is very positive for the time being, expecting

Obama will deal with the debt default risk," said Teerada

Charnyingyong, a strategist with Bangkok-based Phillip


Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index was up 0.6

percent, its highest in more than two weeks, while Malaysia

was up 0.7 percent to a two-week high. Vietnam,

the region's best performer so far this year, gained 0.6

percent, recovering from a one-week low.

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Change at 0644 GMT

Market Current Prev Close Pct Move

TR SE Asia Index* 416.29 412.51 +0.92

Singapore 3192.89 3169.91 +0.72

Kuala Lumpur 1787.96 1775.92 +0.68

Bangkok 1458.79 1451.91 +0.47

Jakarta 4512.12 4486.68 +0.57

Manila 6496.97 6435.97 +0.95

Ho Chi Minh 497.82 494.81 +0.61