Bargain hunting lifts KLCI above 1,700 level in early trade

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 24): The FBM KLCI clawed above the 1,700-point level in early trade on mild bargain hunting activities involving select index-linked blue chips.

At 9.05am, the FBM KLCI added 4.55 points to 1,702.15.

The early gainers included Petronas Gas Bhd, Top Glove Corp Bhd, Public Bank Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Lotte Chemical Titan Holding Bhd, Hong Leong Bank Bhd, Genting Malaysia Bhd, Sime Darby Plantation Bhd and Axiata Group Bhd.

Asian stocks edged up on Wednesday as a late round of buying helped Wall Street indexes pare most of their earlier panic-driven losses, although crude oil struggled near two-month lows after Saudi Arabia flagged possible supply increases, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.2 percent following a decline of more than 2 percent the previous day, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders’ brief said the impact of the trade war between the US and China has impacted selected corporates in the US.

“Furthermore, should there be a prolonged trade war, it may increase costs for companies and raising fears that tighter global trade conditions would cause a slowdown in global economic activities. Hence, we may anticipate heightened volatility moving forward on Wall Street.

“On the local bourse, with both the external (trade war, interest rate upcycle outlook and 10-year Treasury yield) and internal (Budget 2019) factors are still pointing towards a softer global outlook, we believe market sentiment will stay tepid ahead of the Budget 2019.

“Hence, traders may focus on high dividend yield, defensive sectors and steep oversold counters for trading opportunities,” it said.