Astro up 8% at intraday high as investors eye defensive dividend plays

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 21): Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd's share price gained 11 sen or 8.4% to close at its intraday high today, possibly due to a report in the latest issue of The Edge Malaysia business & investment weekly which indicates Astro may be a defensive and high dividend yield stock worth looking at.

At Bursa Malaysia, pay-TV operator Astro shares closed at RM1.42, valuing the company at RM7.4 billion. Astro, which saw 4.11 million shares traded, was earlier transacted among the bourse's top gainers.

The Edge Malaysia reported in its Oct 21-27, 2019 issue that as interest rates are projected to stay low for the foreseeble future, investors are likely to turn their attention to defensive stocks with high dividend yields.

It was reported that a possible candidate is Astro, given its attractive dividend yield of more than 5%, based on its current share price.

At Astro's closing share price of RM1.42 today and based on the company's total dividends of nine sen a share for financial year ended Jan 31, 2019 [FY19], the group offers a dividend yield of 6.34%.

Malaysia's overnight policy rate stands at 3%, according to Bank Negara Malaysia's website.