KLCI snaps 4-day losing streak as investors weigh BNM rate decision, US election whipsaws stocks

KLCI snaps 4-day losing streak as investors weigh BNM rate decision, US election whipsaws stocks
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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 4): The FBM KLCI closed 3.16 points or 0.22% higher at 1,464.61 today after declining for four consecutive trading days as investors weighed Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) latest interest rate decision while waiting for the outcome of the US presidential election.

At 5pm, Bursa Malaysia saw 7.3 billion securities worth RM3.36 billion traded across the exchange.

Gainers outpaced decliners at 702 to 377 respectively after broad-based buying across Bursa today as retail investors were seen returning to the local share market after BNM maintained the Overnight Policy Rate (OPR) at 1.75% yesterday.

It was reported that BNM decided to maintain the OPR as Malaysia’s economic activity is projected to improve further and as the central bank expects the nation’s underlying inflation to remain subdued as the world economy contends with the resurgence in Covid-19 cases.

Today, analysts said BNM’s view on Malaysia’s economic outlook is deemed sanguine. TA Securities Holdings Bhd senior technical analyst Stephen Soo said investor sentiment has improved after BNM’s sanguine view on the country’s economic outlook.

"So far, the (share trade) volume is quite strong as retailers are coming back strongly,” Soo told theedgemarkets.com as world markets took a cue from the US presidential election.

Globally, it was reported that share markets were whipsawed and bonds well bid on Wednesday as results from the US presidential election proved far closer than polls had predicted, potentially leaving the outcome in doubt for days to come.

"US equity futures went on a wild ride, rising then falling, only to climb again as the voting seemed to favour (US President Donald) Trump,” Reuters reported.

It was reported that Democratic contender Joe Biden took to the air to declare he was still optimistic about winning and called for all votes to be counted, no matter how long it took.

Across Bursa today, top gainers included Pharmaniaga Bhd and Duopharma Biotech Bhd after these companies’ share prices jumped in the final trading hour in an apparent response to news that Malaysia is in the final stages of negotiations to participate in the Covid-19 Global Vaccine Access (COVAX) Facility.

Bernama, quoting Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, reported that the ceiling price set for the Covid-19 vaccine offered to Malaysia under the COVAX Facility is US$21 (RM87.50) each.

“We hope to sign the participation in COVAX soon. However, COVAX would only provide the country a portion of the required supply and the bigger part of this procurement process will be achieved via two-way negotiations with other countries or companies,” Khairy said in Parliament today.

On Bursa, Pharmaniaga’s share price closed up 28 sen or 5.74% at RM5.16 while Duopharma rose 26 sen or 7.01% to RM3.97. 

Chong Jin Hun