EMERGING MARKETS-Stocks slip into correction territory on Beijing lockdown fears – Yahoo Finance

* MSCI's EM stocks index in correction territory
* China equities touch 2-year lows on lockdown fears
* South Africa's Sasol tumbles on flood impact warning
* Indonesia's government bonds fall on palm oil ban (Adds comments, graphic, details; Updates prices throughout)
By Shreyashi Sanyal
April 25 (Reuters) – Concerns that Beijing could join Shanghai in a strict COVID-19 lockdown hammered Chinese shares on Monday, dragging the MSCI's index for emerging market stocks into correction territory.
The index was last down 2.5% in its worst one-day percentage fall since mid-March, leaving it 10% below its early April peak, after China's stocks closed nearly 5% lower at a two-year low. The Shanghai composite index shed 5.1%.
China's commercial hub, Shanghai, entered its fourth week of a harsh lockdown, with Beijing fearing similar curbs after the emergence of COVID-19 cases.
Worries remain over the impact on China's economy, with both the onshore and offshore yuan hitting their weakest levels since April 2021.
"I think we're in for a tough time in emerging markets," said Per Hammarlund, chief EM strategist at SEB.
"With U.S. rates going up, China growth worries and the war in Ukraine – factors like these will weigh on risk sentiment in emerging markets at least for the coming months."
Indonesia's government banned the export of palm oil last week, putting the rupiah on track for its steepest drop since June 2021. Dollar-denominated bonds also fell more than 1 cent to their lowest since early 2020 when the pandemic spread.
"It will have an impact and it will cause worries about rising food inflation and rising food shortages, especially in Northern Africa and also in the Middle East," Hammarlund said.
Emerging markets have come under pressure as developed markets like the United States look set for more aggressive monetary-policy tightening cycles to combat inflationary pressures.
Money markets expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise interest rates by a half point at the next two meetings, lifting the dollar to two-year highs versus its rivals.
Currencies of emerging market exporters such as South Africa's rand, Brazil's real , Colombia's peso, had outperformed those of non-exporters as Russia's invasion of Ukraine triggered a commodity price rally, which has cooled in recent days and proven to be a short term boost.
The MSCI's EM currencies index fell by 0.7% against the greenback amid general risk-aversion on Monday.
South Africa's rand fell 0.4%, down for the eighth straight session, while stocks in the region tumbled 3.2% as they eyed their worst day since early March.
Markets in Africa's most industrialized economy were pummelled last week as floods devastated the KwaZulu-Natal province, killing more than 400 people and causing at least 10 billion rand ($656 million) of damage.
South Africa's Sasol fell more than 5% as it declared force majeure on the export of certain chemical products due to the floods, possibly affecting its fourth-quarter volume outlook.
Turkey's lira dipped 0.2%, while Russia's onshore rouble firmed against the dollar, helped by tax payments that companies are due to make this week, ahead of a central bank rate decision on Friday.
For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance in 2022, see http://tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance in 2022, see https://tmsnrt.rs/2OusNdX
For TOP NEWS across emerging markets
For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see
For TURKISH market report, see
For RUSSIAN market report, see
(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Amal Sudheer in Bengaluru; Additiona reporting by Karin Strohecker in London; Editing by Alexander Smith and Hugh Lawson)
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