FBM KLCI up marginally as markets brace for new salvo in China-US trade spat

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 7): The FBM KLCI closed 0.6 point or 0.03% higher after an 11th-hour rise on bargain hunting. The KLCI had earlier fallen as global investors braced for new salvos in the China-US trade spat.

At Bursa Malaysia, the KLCI ended at 1,799.17 points at 5pm after falling to its intraday low at 1,795.29 points. Reuters reported that Asian shares carved out a 14-month trough on Friday as investors feared a new salvo of Sino-US tariffs could come at any moment, while a slump in US chip stocks rippled through the tech-heavy region.

It was reported that nerves were set to be frayed further as the public comment period for proposed tariffs on an additional US$200 billion worth of Chinese imports ended at 0400 GMT. The tariffs could now go into effect at any moment, though there was no clear timetable. China has warned of retaliation if Washington launches any new measures.

In Malaysia, CIMB Research analyst Nick Foo Mun Pang told theedgemarkets.com today that the research firm would advise investors to stay on the sidelines next week as market sentiment is still weak.

Foo said : “Market breadth has been negative over the past few days despite some marginal gains in the KLCI. It shows that overall sentiment is still weak, any rebound will be capped at about the recent (three-month) high of 1,827 points.”

The KLCI ended higher today ahead of a long weekend. Malaysian markets will be closed on Monday for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s birthday, which falls on Sunday.

On Tuesday, markets will also be closed for the Awal Muharram holiday. "Bursa Malaysia and its subsidiaries will resume operations on Wednesday, 12 September 2018," the stock exchange operator and regulator said in a statement.