KLCI closes lower amid continued tensions between US and N.Korea

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 11): The FBM KLCI closed 10.81 points or 0.62% lower, in line with regional peers, amid reports of continued tensions between North Korea and the US.

At 5.01pm, the KLCI was down at 1,766.96 points.

Across Asia, South Korea's Kospi was down 1.69% at 2,319.71 points and Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 2.04% to 26,883.51 points.

Inter Pacific Securities research head Pong Teng Siew told theedgemarkets.com that the market has previously been ignoring the building tension between North Korea and the US, despite talks of a potential nuclear war.

"The market has finally woken up to the threat of a possible nuclear war, hence the drop in performance today, as it finally realises the weight of the tensions between [the two countries]," he said.

He added that speculation of the potential war has affected South Korea's Samsung Electronics, the world's largest semiconductor player, and that the situation has had knock-on effects on domestic tech stocks.

Today, Bursa Malaysia saw 1.64 billion shares worth RM1.89 billion traded, compared with 1.35 billion shares valued at RM1.5 billion traded at yesterday's close.

Decliners outpaced gainers at 718 versus 165. Week-on-week, the FBM KLCI has fallen 0.32% from its close of 1,771.9 points last Friday.

Among the top gainers were United Plantations Bhd and Bintulu Port Holdings Bhd. The decliners' list was led by Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Ajinomoto (Malaysia) Bhd, and AEON Credit Service (M) Bhd.

Reuters reported Japanese stocks finished slightly lower after a choppy session on Thursday, as investors kept a wary watch on tension over North Korea ahead of Japan's long weekend.