FBM KLCI down slightly as telcos decline

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 16): The FBM KLCI closed marginally lower today, dragged down mainly by telecommunication heavyweights.

The benchmark index closed 0.95 points or 0.05% lower at 1,754.37.

Areca Capital Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Danny Wong Teck Meng said the index was affected by falls in telecommunications stocks such as Axiata Group Bhd, DiGi.com Bhd and Maxis Bhd.

“The telcos have been in the run-up for the past two to three months. So, it’s probably because of profit taking,” Wong told theedgemarkets.com.

Wong said there was continued rotational play in small- and mid- cap stocks.

“There is an interesting performance in small- and mid- caps stocks.  And I foresee this to continue as investors are waiting for the details of Budget 2018, and quarterly results which are coming soon,” he added.

He said if the quarterly results are good, then this coupled with the Budget could be the catalysts for KLCI to rise further.

Overall, the market saw 3.16 billion shares worth RM2.27 billion traded. There were 372 gainers and 448 decliners.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 0.47%, South Korea's Kospi climbed 0.26% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 0.76%.

Nikkei rose to a fresh 21-year high as the dollar stayed steady against the yen, while index-heavyweight SoftBank surged on news that T-Mobile and Sprint plan to merge.

Traders' belief that Japan’s ruling party bloc will win the general election later this month continued to underpin market sentiment, and a weaker yen raised hopes that Japanese companies will report strong earnings, Reuters reported.