KLCI pares gains, remains up 0.44% as banks lift

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 19): The FBM KLCI pared some its gains at the midday break today and was up 0.44%, against the backdrop of higher regional markets.

At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI was up 7.72 points to 1,760.79. The index had earlier risen to its intra-morning high 1,764.15.

Gainers led losers by 356 to 251, while 605 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.81 billion shares valued at RM1.39 billion.

The top gainers included Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, KESM Industries Bhd, Malayan Banking Bhd, Public Bank Bhd, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd, Enra Group Bhd and Lafarge Malaysia Bhd.

The actives included Revenue Group Bhd, My E.G. Services Bhd, Pegasus Heights Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, Diversified Gateway Solutions Bhd, Malton Bhd, Velesto Energy Bhd and Ekovest Bhd.

The decliners included Nestle (M) Bhd, Top Glove Corp Bhd, MNRB Holdings Bhd, UMW Holdings Bhd, Chin Teck Plantations Bhd, Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, United Plantaions Bhd and Hong Leong Bank Bhd.

Asian shares extended early gains on Thursday as upbeat Wall Street earnings buoyed global investor sentiment, although trade war jitters pushed China's yuan to fresh one-year lows in both the onshore and offshore markets, according to Reuters.

The US dollar retreated from a three-week high as investors cashed in on gains the currency made after US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's two-day testimony reinforced a strong economic outlook, it said.

Affin Hwang Capital Research said the FBM KLCI Index maintained its strong run in the last session, gaining 15.79 points, extending the winning streak to eight days now.

"Prices have broken the 1,730-1,750 resistance level convincingly and [are] expected to continue higher towards the 1,800 level.

"The FBM KLCI Index likely to move sideways with slight upward bias in the near term," it said.