CEE MARKETS-Zloty recovers after sharp falls following central bank governor's comments

By Alan Charlish

WARSAW, Oct 7 (Reuters) - The Polish zloty rebounded on Friday, recovering some ground after heavy losses in the previous session following the central bank's move to leave rates on hold and comments from its governor on inflation and the zloty.

The National Bank of Poland (NBP) left its main rate unchanged at 6.75% on Wednesday, defying analysts' expectations of a 25 basis-point hike.

Governor Adam Glapinski said on Thursday that the NBP was pausing, rather than formally ending, its tightening cycle. But some economists viewed his comments that factors fuelling inflation were easing as evidence of the impending end of rate hikes. He also said that zloty weakness was not a "catastrophe".

This sparked a selloff which pushed the zloty down more than 1% against the euro at the European close.

"We may expect some correction after a very pronounced move for the past few days, but that said I don't think the short and medium term prospects of the zloty are particularly optimistic," said Piotr Popławski, senior economist at ING in Warsaw.

The Polish currency was 0.38% stronger against the euro at 4.861 at 0838 GMT.

A Warsaw-based currency trader said that there were "still buyers at these levels" for the zloty.

Meanwhile, the Hungarian forint, the region's worst performing currency this year, was down 0.31% at 423.60.

The forint fell to a record low of 426 per euro on Monday, pressured by high energy prices, a lack of agreement with the European Union over funds and the central bank's announcement it would halt rate hikes.

"Hungary is finding it difficult to shore up the HUF despite several concrete steps to deter outflows," Bank of America said in a note on Thursday, adding that Wednesday's long term deposit auction "reflects a strong tightening effort".

Hungary's central bank accepted 2.093 trillion forints worth of bids at its floating-rate deposit tender on Wednesday, as part of its efforts to drain and tighten liquidity in interbank markets.

The Czech crown, tightly controlled by the country's central bank, was 0.12% weaker at 24.53. (Reporting by Alan Charlish in Warsaw and Krisztina Than in Budapest. Editing by Jane Merriman)