KUALA LUMPUR (June 10): The FBM KLCI closed up 6.14 points or 0.37% today, tracking Asian stock market gains amid US interest rate cut speculation and after the US suspended plans to impose tariffs on Mexican imports.
At 5pm, the KLCI settled at 1,655.47. Across Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 closed up 1.2% while South Korea's Kospi gained 1.31%. In China, the Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite climbed 0.86% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 2.27%.
In Malaysia, Inter-Pacific Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Pong Teng Siew told theedgemarkets.com that "market speculation on US rate cut led to gains in the KLCI today as well as global markets".
Lower US interest rates bode well for Asian markets in anticipation that global fund managers will shift their money into higher-yielding Asian assets such as stocks, bonds and currencies.
Reuters reported that Asian shares, European and US stock futures rose on Monday after the United States shelved plans to impose tariffs on Mexico and as global investors hoped for lower US interest rates on the back of lacklustre jobs data.
It was reported that a Labor Department report showed nonfarm payrolls increased by 75,000 jobs last month, much smaller than the 185,000 additions estimated by economists in a Reuters poll, suggesting the loss of momentum in economic activity was spreading to the labor market. As a result, traders raised bets for a rate cut in July followed by two more rate cuts by year-end, according to the newswire.
Across Bursa Malaysia today, 2.28 billion shares worth RM1.79 billion were traded. There were 550 gainers versus 260 decliners.
Top gainers included Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd and Genting Bhd.