KLCI down on profit taking, disappointing earnings

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 30): The FBM KLCI closed slightly lower today on profit taking in some index-related counters ahead of the National Day holiday tomorrow and due to disappointing earnings.

The KLCI closed 0.05% or 0.98 point lower at 1,819.66.

A look at the market breath saw the decliners leading gainers by 685 to 299, while 350 counters traded unchanged. A total of 2.63 billion shares worth RM2.96 billion changed hands in the open market.

Top gainers included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, while Supermax Corp Bhd led decliners. Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd was the day's most active counter.

Hong Leong Investment Bank's head of retail research Loui Low said the KLCI was impacted by profit-taking activities in selected counters.

"There is also a sharp selldown in the broader market as earnings results have been mixed with a slight bias towards negative," Low said, citing Telekom Malaysia Bhd as an example.

He added that the selling pressure in the broader market has been ongoing for a while.

On the regional front, Japan's Nikkei 225 was up by 0.09% or 21.28 points to 22,869.50. The MSCI Asia Apex 50 was, however, lower by 0.18% or 2.29 points to 1,272.22.

Reuters reported that the Nikkei eked out small gains after touching a more than three-month high today as positive developments in trade negotiations underpinned sentiment, but investors wasted no time taking profits from the gains in late trade.