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EM ASIA FX-Most Asian units slip as dollar steadies; won, rupee top losers

(Adds text, updates prices)

By Aby Jose Koilparambil

Jan 8 (Reuters) - Most Asian currencies inched down on

Tuesday as the dollar steadied after three sessions of losses,

helped by positive signals about ongoing Sino-U.S. trade talks.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross predicted Beijing and

Washington could reach a "reasonable settlement" as officials

from the world's two largest economies resumed talks in a bid to

end a dispute that has roiled global markets.

As the talks' first day ended on Monday, Chinese importers

made a third large purchase of U.S. soybeans in the past month,

Chicago-based traders said.

Barring any negative events, emerging market currencies

could enter a comfortable period in the short term as

expectations of no further U.S. Federal Reserve rate hikes for a

prolonged period is likely to keep the greenback under pressure.

"We look for the dollar to continue to bleed lower in the

short term. The key 200-week moving average for the dollar at

95.90 may remain a pivot point," OCBC Bank said in a note on

Tuesday.

Some investors are convinced the U.S. will not raise

interest rates this year over domestic growth worries after

dovish statements by Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Friday.

The Korean won declined as much as 0.6 percent

after South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, the

world's biggest maker of smartphones and semiconductors, on

Tuesday estimated a 29 percent drop in operating profit for

October-December, its first decline in two years.

Higher oil prices put the region's net importers under

pressure, with the Indian rupee weakening as much as

0.6 percent to 70.11 against the dollar.

Oil prices edged up on Tuesday, supported by hopes that for

U.S.-Chinese talks in Beijing, while the start of OPEC-led

supply cuts also tightened markets.

The Indonesian rupiah, another currency impacted by

oil prices, erased initial gains and slipped 0.2 percent.

The Thai baht weakened as much as 0.3 percent while

the Chinese yuan shed 0.1 percent.

TAIWAN DOLLAR

The Taiwanese dollar edged down 0.1 percent to

30.84 against the dollar.

Taiwan on Monday reported a 3 percent decline in December

exports from a year earlier, reflecting the impact of the

U.S.-China trade war and weaker global demand for tech gadgets.

Later on Tuesday, Taiwan will report December inflation,

which is expected to have cooled.

The following table shows rates for Asian currencies against

the dollar at 0512 GMT.

CURRENCIES VS U.S. DOLLAR

Currency Latest bid Previous day Pct Move

Japan yen 108.950 108.7 -0.23

Sing dlr 1.358 1.3560 -0.17

Taiwan dlr 30.839 30.812 -0.09

Korean won 1124.800 1118.6 -0.55

Baht 32.070 32 -0.22

Peso 52.380 52.58 +0.38

Rupiah 14110.000 14085 -0.18

Rupee 70.105 69.68 -0.61

Ringgit 4.109 4.113 +0.10

Yuan 6.857 6.8505 -0.10

Change so far in 2019

Currency Latest bid End 2018 Pct Move

Japan yen 108.950 109.56 +0.56

Sing dlr 1.358 1.3627 +0.32

Taiwan dlr 30.839 30.733 -0.34

Korean won 1124.800 1115.70 -0.81

Baht 32.070 32.55 +1.50

Peso 52.380 52.58 +0.38

Rupiah 14110.000 14375 +1.88

Rupee 70.105 69.77 -0.48

Ringgit 4.109 4.1300 +0.51

Yuan 6.857 6.8730 +0.23

(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by

Richard Borsuk)