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SE Asia Stocks-Muted; eyes on trade talks, U.S. job data

* Trump said trade deal with China might be out in 4 weeks

* Singapore posts biggest weekly gain in 12 weeks

* Philippine inflation eases, interest rate cut expected

By Shreya Mariam Job

April 5 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets were

rangebound on Friday as mixed reports about progress on a trade

deal between Washington and Beijing left investors cautious

about taking on more risk.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday said the United

States and China were close to a trade deal that could be

announced within four weeks, while warning Beijing that it would

be difficult to allow trade to continue without a pact.

Also under the investor radar is the U.S. payrolls report,

which is forecast to rebound to 180,000 in March, following

February's distorted 20,000 rise, which points to stronger

labour market strength amid concerns of economic risks.

Philippine stocks rebounded from previous session's

losses to end higher, with gains concentrated in the financial

sector. For the week, however, the index posted a 0.6 percent

fall.

Philippine inflation eased in March to its slowest annual

pace in 15 months on easing food prices. It compounded signs

that the central bank could take advantage of the cooling

inflation to reverse some of last year's policy tightening to

support economic growth.

"Another benign inflation print in April should allow the

BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) to cut its Overnight Reverse

Repurchase Rate (RRP) by 25bps at its May meeting," economists

Mustafa Ali and Sanjay Mathur said in an ANZ report.

Ayala Corp and Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co

picked up 1.8 percent and 1.1 percent, respectively.

The Singapore benchmark index closed higher, boosted

by gains in financials. Top lenders extended their strength with

DBS Group Holdings Ltd, Oversea-Chinese Banking

Corporation Ltd, and United Overseas Bank Ltd

climbing between 0.4 percent and 0.7 percent.

The index posted a 3.4 percent gain for the week, its

highest weekly gain in 12.

Financials and energy shares dragged the Indonesian index

0.3 percent lower; but it closed 0.1 percent firmer on

the week. Bank Central Asia Tbk Pt slid 0.7 percent,

while Bank Mandiri Tbk Pt dropped 1.6 percent.

Malaysian stocks snapped a three-session winning

streak to close 0.2 percent weaker. Telecom stocks dragged the

index lower with Maxis Bhd dropping 2 percent.

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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS

Change on the day

Market Current Previous close Pct Move

Singapore 3322.64 3316.21 0.19

Bangkok 1646.18 1644.22 0.12

Manila 7873.18 7854.13 0.24

Jakarta 6474.018 6494.63 -0.32

Kuala Lumpur 1641.81 1645.07 -0.20

Ho Chi Minh 989.26 986.91 0.24

Change so far in 2019

Market Current End 2018 Pct Move

Singapore 3322.64 3068.76 8.27

Bangkok 1646.18 1563.88 5.26

Manila 7873.18 7,466.02 5.45

Jakarta 6474.018 6,194.50 4.51

Kuala Lumpur 1641.81 1690.58 -2.88

Ho Chi Minh 989.26 892.54 10.84

(Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry

Jacob-Phillips)