Asian markets decline, Axiata in focus

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KUALA LUMPUR: Asian markets fell in early trade on April 8 as sentiment was dampened by the weak overnight close on Wall Street while at Bursa Malaysia, Axiata was in focus after its shares went ex rights. At 10am, the KL Composite Index was up 1.2 points or 0.13% to 921.04. Turnover was 154 million shares valued at RM201 million. There were 92 gainers, 129 losers and 100 stocks unchanged. However, the market could see extended profit taking, in line with the weaker regional bourses. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index opened 1.8% lower at 14,660.4 while Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 1.98% to 8,658.09 and Shanghai’s Composite Index fell 0.55% to 2,425.72. Singapore’s Straits Times Index fell 1.25% to 1,779.9. Light crude oil slipped below the US$50 mark, down 86 cents to US$48.29. At Bursa, Axiata was the most active with 11.29 million shares done, jumping 14 sen to RM1.93. However, Maybank’s entitlement to the rights shares, which came under selling pressure yesterday, was unchanged RM1.06. KL Kepong rose 10 sen to RM11, supported by the firm crude palm oil prices. Consumer stocks QSR added seven sen to RM2.75 and KFCH five sen to RM6.95. Top Glove’s better second quarter results saw its share price advancing seven sen to RM5.05. WCT, which had been upgraded by several research houses, saw its shares rising four sen to RM1.49. MISC was the top loser, down 25 sen to RM8.40 with 700 shares done. AIRB fell 18 sen to 70 sen, Genting 10 sen to RM4.26, EON Cap fell nine sen to RM2.77 and TM eight sen to RM3.56.