KLCI closes further down at 1,786.84 points

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 15): The FBM KLCI closed 0.53% or 9.54 points lower at 1,786.84 today, marking its third day of settling below the “psychological” level of 1,800 points since Feb 6.

The benchmark index had a brief technical rebound, hitting an intraday high of 1,801.12 points, but failed to sustain the momentum to market close.

When contacted by The Edge Markets.com, Danny Wong, chief executive officer of Areca Capital Sdn Bhd said, he expected the local bourse to continue to subject to volatility in the immediate term, adding that the sell-down today is a knock-on effect from the big selldown in the past one to two weeks.

“It appears that there is still fear among retail investors, due to global selldown sentiments, thus prompting them to clear their positions… There’s also some possible force-selling, due to margin calls in the mid to small cap space,” he said over the phone.

Wong was of the view the selldown was overly done, as it was “across the board” and included stocks with good fundamentals.

Nonetheless, he said when the next quarterly results season is out in the next two to four weeks, the selldown in the market may "ease", as companies with solid fundamentals will show earnings are here to stay.

“[That said], I think the selling this week is not as serious as before [last week], hopefully this will be the last leg,” he remarked.

Meanwhile, a remisier told The Edge Markets.com that mid-cap oil and gas counters, which have seen heavy profit-taking, will continue to drop or “consolidate” for a while more. “If there are plenty of contra transactions, expect more profit taking.” He nonetheless views this profit-taking as only short-term.

Earlier, Reuters reported Asian stocks regained a semblance of stability today, following days of steep losses. However, sentiment remained fragile, as benign Chinese inflation data and gloom in the euro zone economy added to signs of a faltering global economic recovery.

At 1.39 pm, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan managed to put on 0.27 percent, pulling away from seven-month lows at the start of the week.

In the broader market, Bursa Malaysia saw 2.04 billion shares worth RM2.17 billion changing hands today. Decliners beat gainers at 658 against 209, while 262 counters were unchanged.

Exchange-traded bond Danainfra Nasional Bhd was the top gainer, rising 60 sen or 0.60% to RM100.10. Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd came in second, as it rose 42 sen or 0.91% to RM46.52.

Top losers include British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Lysaght Galvanized Steel Bhd (Lysaght), and Hong Leong Industries Bhd (HLI). BAT fell RM2.10 or 3.11% to RM65.50, Lysaght fell 42 sen or 11.35% to RM3.28, and HLI fell 40 sen or 8.87% to RM4.11.

Sumatec Resources Bhd was the most active stock, with 107.7 million exchanged hands.

Across the region, Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 137.01 points or 0.92% to 15,073.52, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 92.08 points or 0.40% to 23,140.05, Singapore’s Straits Times Index was up 4.32 points or 0.14% to 3,198.72.

Meanwhile, South Korea’s Kospi was down 3.34 points or 0.17% to 1,925.91, while Taiwan’s Taiex fell 112.88 points or 1.29% to 8,655.51.