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EMERGING MARKETS-Emerging market stocks hit near six-week top on China stimulus signals

Aaron Saldanha

stimulus signals@

* Asian stocks rise on signals of further Chinese stimulus

* Yuan can be kept stable despite stimulus - PBOC official

* Turkish lira soft, data shows uptick in unemployment

* Yield on J.P. Morgan's GBI-EM index lowest since May

Jan 15 (Reuters) - Emerging market stocks rose on Tuesday, helped by Chinese shares clocking their best day in a week and a half on signs of more stimulus, while developing world currencies broadly firmed against a soft dollar ahead of Britain's parliamentary vote on Brexit.

Chinese shares gained as Beijing signalled more stimulus to bolster the world's second largest economy, a day after weaker-than-expected monthly trade data prompted deeper fears about the toll a bruising trade war with the United States was exacting.

Concerns about slowing global growth raised expectations of a pause in U.S. Federal Reserve rate hikes, weakening the dollar in the run-up to the parliamentary vote on Prime Minister Theresa May's European Union divorce deal.

MSCI's developing world stocks benchmark rose 1.1 percent and was near a six-week peak, pushed up by gains in index heavyweights China , South Korea and Taiwan, which all ended at least 1 percent higher.

China's yuan firmed in the onshore market, with a vice governor of the People's Bank of China saying authorities are confident of keeping the yuan rate stable despite cuts to banks reserves, a message markets found credible.

China has shown in the past that "if they have a policy, they will stick by it even if it involves running down some of their foreign exchange reserves", said Gareth Leather, a senior economist with Capital Economics.

Turkey's lira softened 0.4 percent. Unemployment in the country ticked up to 11.6 percent in the September-November period from the August-October period, data on Tuesday showed.

South African stocks were on pace for their highest closing level in more than two months. Internet group Naspers Ltd notched a 0.6 percent gain, as Tencent Holdings Ltd rose 2.6 percent.

Naspers holds a stake of about 31.1 percent in the Chinese internet giant, according to Refinitiv Eikon data.

The rand weakened on technical factors as the dollar-rand pair started trade in close proximity to the 200-day moving average, after which bullish technicals traders pushed the pair up as much as 0.4 percent.

Russia's rouble was little changed with the central bank was set to resume foreign exchange purchases after a five-month hiatus. Higher oil prices helped Russian stocks rise 0.6 percent.

Emerging European currencies such as Hungary's forint , Poland's zloty and Romania's leu traded marginally firmer against the euro ahead of the Brexit vote.

A rally in emerging market local currency government bonds saw the yield on JP Morgan's GBI-EM index hit its lowest level since May.

The index, which effectively aggregates developing world governments' borrowing costs, saw its yield drop to 6.394 percent having stood at almost 6.7 percent in mid-December.

For TOP NEWS across emerging markets

For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see

For TURKISH market report, see

For RUSSIAN market report, see (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru and Winni Zhou in Shanghai; Editing by Alison Williams)