FBM KLCI up 9.79 points as Powell's comments on US interest rate spur positive sentiment

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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 29): The FBM KLCI closed 9.79 points or 0.58% higher today after US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's dovish comments on the nation's interest rate outlook spurred positive sentiment across world markets.

At Bursa Malaysia, the KLCI closed at 1,696.34. At a glance, KLCI stocks including PPB Group Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd and IHH Healthcare Bhd rose among the top gainers.

Reuters reported that Powell boosted US stock markets on Wednesday when he said the policy rate is now "just below" estimates of a level that neither brakes nor boosts a healthy economy, comments that many took as signaling the Fed's three-year tightening cycle is drawing to a close.

It was reported that Asian stocks rose today, tracking gains on Wall Street, after the chairman of the US Federal Reserve suggested it may be nearing an end to its three-year rate tightening cycle, boosting interest in riskier assets.

In Malaysia, Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd senior analyst Kenneth Leong told theedgemarkets.com that the KLCI's positive sentiment was "mainly spurred by Powell's dovish comments".

Leong said Powell's comments had pushed share prices of KLCI constituents such as PPB, Nestle and KLK higher.

Across Bursa Malaysia today, 2.16 billion shares worth RM2.45 billion were traded as buying of big-market capitalisation (big cap) stocks appeared strong while small-cap stocks fell.
Bursa Malaysia's small cap index fell 178.06 points or 1.42% to close at 12,326.77.