Press Metal, YTL Corp lead FBM KLCI rebound

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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 7): Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd was the top gainer among FBM KLCI's 30 stocks in percentage terms as investors bargain hunted for beaten-down Malaysian shares after the global equity market sell-down. Malaysian markets might have also taken cue today from US stocks' overnight rise.

At 12.30pm, Press Metal shares jumped 24 sen or 4.37% to settle at RM5.73 followed by YTL Corp Bhd, which rose five sen or 3.57% to RM1.45. The KLCI rose 26.76 points to 1,839.21 points.

Yesterday, the KLCI declined 40.62 points to close at 1,812.45 points as Malaysian shares fell with global equities amid higher US bond yield and US interest rate hike concerns.

Today, Public Investment Bank Bhd wrote in a note the FBM KLCI's valuation is attractive versus regional stock markets in price-to-earnings terms.

"The FBM KLCI is still cheap from a regional standpoint, at 16.4x 1-year forward price-to-earnings ratio compared to Thailand's 18.6x, our most direct comparable, economy-wise. Indonesia and Philippines are currently trading in excess of 23x earnings. Earnings growth will accelerate from 3.6% in 2017 to 6.3% in 2018, underpinned by the country's stronger economic performances cascading into corporate and consumer Malaysia.

"We remain positive on the local bourse for 2018, perhaps not overly-enthusiastic though this has already been communicated before. Fundamentals remain unchanged this month and last. What is changing is the perception of heightened inflation and interest rate hike risks in the US which has deflated investment sentiment," it said.