Fall on fresh worries of deteriorating U.S.-China relations

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(Dec 6): Southeast Asian stock markets closed lower on Thursday, in line with broader Asia, after the arrest of a top executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei for extradition to the U.S. stoked fears of an escalation in tensions between the two countries.

The MSCI's ex-Japan Asia-Pacific index fell 2% as the recent development was seen as a blow to U.S.-China relations, deepening scepticism about a potential resolution to a long-running trade war as both parties enter a crucial 90-day truce period.

Investor sentiment was dented further by rising worries of an economic slowdown and a possible rise in U.S. interest rates, after the benchmark U.S. treasury 10-year yield hit a three-month low on Wednesday.

"While the global economy is on a gradual slowdown rather than an uncontrolled spiral, the path is on a knife's edge amid U.S.-China trade tensions (notwithstanding a temporary truce), tightening policy and geo-political risks kicking up volatility and uncertainty," said Vishnu Varathan — head, economics and strategy at Mizuho Bank.

The Singapore index fell 1.3%, led by technology stocks. 

Singapore Press Holdings Ltd dropped 4.2%, while Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd dipped 2%. 

Philippine stocks fell 1.3% with real estate and financials leading the losses. 

SM Prime Holdings Inc dipped 3.5%, while Ayala Corp dropped 2.7%.

Meanwhile, a dip in oil prices on the backdrop of an OPEC meeting sent Thai stocks 1.1% lower. 

Oil prices fell on Thursday as stock markets slid and as traders eyed a meeting of the oil bloc expected to result in a supply cut aimed at draining a glut that has pulled down crude prices by 30% since October.

Index heavyweights PTT PCL and Airports of Thailand PCL were the top drags on the index, shedding 2.4% and 1.5% respectively. 

Indonesia and Malaysia lost 0.3% each. 
 Change on the day

Market Current Previous close Pct Move
Singapore 3115.52 3155.92 -1.28
Bangkok 1653.73 1672.32 -1.11
Manila 7535.32 7630.9 -1.25
Jakarta 6115.493 6133.12 -0.29
Kuala Lumpur 1683.34 1688.27 -0.29
Ho Chi Minh 954.82 957.14 -0.24

Change on year

Market Current End prev yr Pct Move
Singapore 3115.52 3402.92 -8.45
Bangkok 1653.73 1753.71 -5.70
Manila 7535.32 8,558.42 -11.95
Jakarta 6115.493 6,355.65 -3.78
Kuala Lumpur 1683.34 1796.81 -6.32
Ho Chi Minh 954.82 984.24 -2.99