EMERGING MARKETS-Robust U.S. economy lifts emerging stocks towards three-year high


LONDON, Aug 7 (Reuters) - Emerging stocks rose on Monday to approach recent three-year highs and currencies were broadly firmer as a dollar surged ebbed and Asia's export-led markets took heart from signs of a stronger U.S. economy.

Friday's data showing a tighter U.S. jobs market boosted Treasury yields and the dollar, as did suggestions from White House economic advisor Gary Cohn that U.S. corporate tax rates could be slashed by at least a third.

Emerging assets tend to benefit from U.S. economic strength, especially if future policy tightening is well-telegraphed. Analysts also expect Chinese data this week to show solid growth momentum in the world's No. 2 economy.

MSCI's emerging equity index rose 0.3 percent, trading close to end-July levels that were the highest since mid-2014. Hong Kong stocks rose 0.4 percent, led by tech-heavyweight Tencent benefiting from Friday's strong Wall Street close.

"You have this background of global growth that is in quite good condition - we saw very strong numbers out of Europe last week - and inflation pressures still being quite subdued, so you don't have central banks being forced to raise rates very significantly and fast to spoil the party," Danske Bank analyst Jakob Christensen said.

"For emerging market equities, the combination of high growth and low inflation pressures in the Western world is a perfect combination."

In emerging Europe, the rouble, under pressure from a new set of U.S. sanctions, slipped 0.2 against the dollar as markets priced more rate cuts following a lower-than-targeted inflation figure and forecasts for zero inflation in August.

The currency is down more than 6 percent since early-June.

Average Russian yields on the GBI-EM index of local currency emerging debt slipped 7 basis points on Friday, according to JPMorgan. Ten-year yields rose a touch on Monday from Friday's one-month lows.

Russian stocks meanwhile rose 0.8 percent, nearing 2-1/2 month highs.

Christensen noted the market was very short the rouble and expected authorities to remain hawkish as Russian inflation expectations remained relatively high.

"So it makes it more difficult for the central bank to more rapidly to ease monetary policy," he added.

South African assets traded nervously, waiting for National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete to announce whether Tuesday's no-confidence motion against President Jacob Zuma can be held under an anonymous vote. That may allow ruling party dissidents to support what will be the ninth attempt by the opposition to unseat Zuma.

The rand was slightly firmer, up 0.2 percent against the dollar, off Friday's three-week lows.

Morgan Stanley said that while Zuma's ejection would be market-positive, "our base case is that the motion fails, even with a secret ballot and we therefore stick to our bearish rand position and fade any positive news on the ballot format today."

On bond markets, Venezuela's most-traded 2038 dollar issue fell more than 1 cent on signs of escalating unrest in the country as authorities quelled an attack on a military base by soldiers and armed civilians on Sunday.

Republic of Congo dollar bonds were unchanged after an International Monetary Fund spokesman said on Friday the authorities had not fully disclosed Congo's debt situation during a March mission.

For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance 2017, see http://tmsnrt.rs/2e7eoml For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance 2017, see http://tmsnrt.rs/2dZbdP5

For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see

For TURKISH market report, see

For RUSSIAN market report, see)

Emerging Markets Prices from Reuters

Equities Latest Net Chg % Chg % Chg

on year

Morgan Stanley

Emrg Mkt Indx 1071.67 +4.41 +0.41 +24.28 Czech Rep 1027.10 +0.89 +0.09 +11.45 Poland 2381.60 +1.44 +0.06 +22.26 Hungary 36687.03 +8.81 +0.02 +14.64 Romania 8339.90 +10.98 +0.13 +17.71 Greece 830.52 +1.02 +0.12 +29.03 Russia 1033.02 +6.29 +0.61 -10.35 South Africa 49929.54 +423.39 +0.86 +13.73 Turkey 09323.05 +777.73 +0.72 +39.91 China 3279.54 +17.46 +0.54 +5.67 India 32307.27 -18.14 -0.06 +21.34 Currencies Latest Prev Local Local close currency currency

% change % change

in 2017

Czech Rep 26.13 26.10 -0.10 +3.38

Poland 4.25 4.24 -0.07 +3.73

Hungary 304.11 304.40 +0.10 +1.55

Romania 4.56 4.56 -0.12 -0.61

Serbia 119.65 119.57 -0.07 +3.09

Russia 60.00 59.91 -0.14 +2.11

Kazakhstan 332.09 332.11 +0.01 +0.47

Ukraine 25.79 25.86 +0.27 +4.69

South Africa 13.39 13.45 +0.45 +2.55

Kenya 103.88 103.80 -0.08 -1.45

Israel 3.62 3.63 +0.16 +6.28

Turkey 3.53 3.53 +0.03 +0.02

China 6.72 6.73 +0.16 +3.37

India 63.73 63.62 -0.17 +6.61

Brazil 3.13 3.13 -0.01 +3.91

Mexico 17.92 17.88 -0.19 +15.61

Debt Index Strip Spd Chg %Rtn Index

Sov'gn Debt EMBIG 319 -1 .02 7 93.79 1

(Reporting by Sujata Rao; additional reporting by Claire Milhench; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)