KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 3): The FBM KLCI closed higher for the second straight day, mirroring the uptrend in regional bourses, on positive sentiment emanating from the overnight surge on Wall Street.
The index closed 0.16% or 2.5 points higher at 1,582.99, after moving between 1,582.54 and 1,597.93.
The heavyweight stocks that powered the rise included Petronas Chemical Group Bhd (up 19 sen or 2.75% at RM7.10), and Genting Bhd (up eight sen or 2.01% at RM4.07).
Remisier Jeffry Azizi Jaafar told theedgemarkets.com that the upswing today was influenced by the firm regional performance.
Index-linked banking stocks also contributed to the KLCI’s higher close, with RHB Bank Bhd up nine sen or 1.76% at RM5.19, Malayan Banking Bhd up nine sen or 1.15% at RM7.94 and CIMB Group Holdings Bhd up four sen or 1.04% at RM3.90.
Also recording gains were index-linked telco players Maxis Bhd (up three sen at RM4.91), Digi.com Bhd (up two sen at RM3.83), Axiata Group Bhd (up four sen at RM3.43) and Telekom Malaysia Bhd (up one sen at RM6.33).
Meanwhile, glove heavyweight counters hit the speed bump today on profit-taking, after a few sessions of gains. Top Glove Corp Bhd fell 23 sen or 3.26% to RM6.82, Supermax Corp Bhd fell 24 sen or 3.66% to RM6.80 and Hartalega Holdings Bhd fell 12 sen or 0.9% to RM13.18.
On the broader market, gainers triumphed losers by 735 to 424. A total of 6.10 billion securities were traded worth RM4.94 billion, compared with 6.63 billion securities worth RM5.12 billion yesterday.
Technology stocks dominated the top gainers list, led by MPI which rose 4.78% or RM1.64 to RM35.94.
UWC Bhd, the third largest gainer by value, closed up 5.17% or 64 sen at RM13.02, followed by Vitrox Corp Bhd (up 3.69% or 62 sen at RM17.4) and Greatech Technology Bhd (up 9.65% or 55 sen at RM6.25).
The active list was led by Iris Corp Bhd with 196.46 million shares traded. It closed up down one sen at 38 sen.
Others actively-traded stocks included Luster Industries Bhd, Metronic Global Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, P.A. Resources Bhd, QES Group Bhd and Vizione Holdings Bhd.
In other Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 1%, South Korea's Kospi gained 1.06% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 0.2%.
Bloomberg reported most Asian markets built on the week's rally, boosted by US stimulus hopes and signs of easing virus infections — as well as improvements in vaccination programmes.
Support was also being provided by hopes that the social media-fuelled retail trading battle that rattled Wall Street last week, appeared to be fizzling, it added.