KLCI pares loss as foreign selling slows down

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 23): The FBM KLCI pared some of its losses at midday break today, despite weaker regional markets, as foreign selling of local equities remained measured for the fourth week running.

At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI shed 0.58 points to 1,754.09. The index had earlier slid to its intra-morning low of 1,749.95.

Gainers led losers by 318 to 266, while 552 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.83 billion shares, valued at RM995.28 million.

The top losers included Ajinomoto (M) Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, UMW Holdings Bhd, PLB Engineering Bhd, PMB Technology Bhd, RHB Bank Bhd and DiGi.Com Bhd.

The actives included Sino Hua-Ann International Bhd, My E.G. Services Bhd, Barakah Offshore Bhd, Nova MSC Bhd, Orion IXL Bhd and AirAsia X Bhd.

The gainers included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, ViTrox Corp Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, Gamuda Bhd, Latitude Tree Holdings Bhd, Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Country Heights Holdings Bhd and Lii Hen Industries Bhd.

Foreign selling of Malaysian equity halved to RM247.1 million last week from RM531.8 million the prior week, according to MIDF Amanah Investment Bank Bhd Research.

In his weekly fund flow report today, MIDF Research’s Adam M Rahim said this was the smallest weekly attrition recorded so far in 2018.

Asian shares dipped on Monday on fears of more protectionist measures from the United States, while the dollar declined against major currencies after U.S. President Donald Trump criticised the Federal Reserve's tightening policy, according to Reuters.

Trump, on Friday, lamented the recent strength of the U.S. dollar and accused the European Union and China of manipulating their currencies, Reuters said.

Affin Hwang Capital Research said the FBM KLCI Index finally ended its winning streak on Friday, closing 4.57 points lower.

“This week may witness the local index consolidate, before moving higher towards the 1800 key level.

“The FBM KLCI Index likely to move sideways with slight upward bias in the near-term,” the research house said.