FBM KLCI up again as builders support broader market

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 2): The FBM KLCI closed up 7.38 points or 0.44% today at 1,691 on expectation of a trade truce between the US and China and as higher crude oil prices supported market sentiment.

Across Bursa Malaysia, positive newsflow on the local construction sector involving the proposed East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) supported broader market sentiment, according to analysts.

"At this juncture, the market is generally more optimistic following news from the G20 meeting, pointing [out] that both presidents (from the US and China) may continue trade talks," Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd head of retail research Loui Low told theedgemarkets.com today.

The KLCI extended gains today after rising 11.49 points yesterday.

Today, Low also said investors are looking beyond external factors as newsflow on the Malaysian construction sector indicates a more exciting outlook for the second half of this year.

"On the local front, domestic catalysts such as the contract awards for the ECRL project have boosted investors' sentiment on the broader market," he said.

Bursa's construction index rose 2.38 points or 1.06% to close at 226.95 to be the largest percentage gainer among indices across the exchange.

Overall, 2.82 billion shares worth RM2.57 billion were traded across Bursa today as oil and gas-related counters closed up among the top actives and leading gainers list amid higher crude oil prices.

KNM Group Bhd was the top-active stock after the counter registered a volume of some 288 million shares. The stock rose 0.5 sen or 1.7% to 30 sen.

KLCI component Petronas Dagangan Bhd ended up 22 sen or 0.87% at RM25.60 among Bursa's leading gainers.

Reuters reported that oil gained on Tuesday as producer club OPEC agreed to extend supply cuts until next March, although prices were pressured by worries demand could ease amid hints of a slowdown in the global economy.

It was reported that Brent crude futures for September delivery were trading up 17 cents, or 0.3%, at US$65.23 a barrel by 0706 GMT, after falling to US$64.66 earlier, while US crude futures for August were up 9 cents at US$59.18 a barrel, after touching their highest in over five weeks on Monday.