KLCI falls below 1,500 as global Covid-19 cases rise

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): The FBM KLCI finished 7.2 points or 0.48% lower at 1,499.43 as Asian equity indices alongside US stock futures amid rising number of global Covid-19 infections leading to world economic growth concerns.

In Malaysia, Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd research vice president Vincent Lau said the drop in the KLCI mirrored weaknesses in Asian share indices as US equity futures sank amid concerns of second lockdowns in Europe due to the rising number of global Covid-19 infections.

Across Bursa Malaysia today, there were 873 decliners versus 274 gainers. Volume stood at 7.03 billion securities valued at RM3.55 billion.

Globally, it was reported that Asian shares slipped today on fears the global economy might sputter for a while due to a resurgence of coronavirus infections in Europe, while fading hopes for US fiscal stimulus also weighed.

Concerns over the resurgence of Covid-19 infections also partly hit crude oil markets. Reuters reported that oil prices fell today on the potential return of output from Libya as rising coronavirus cases also added to worries about global demand, although a tropical storm heading for the US Gulf of Mexico limited losses.

It was reported that Brent crude was down 33 cents, or 0.8%, at US$42.82 a barrel by 0645 GMT, while US crude was down 38 cents, or 0.9%, to US$40.73 a barrel.

Such sentiment had an impact on oil and gas (O&G)-related shares across Bursa.

Bursa's energy index, which tracks share prices in O&G-related firms, closed down 1.72%.

Petronas Dagangan Bhd led Bursa's decliners after its share price ended down 76 sen or 3.59% at RM20.40.

Chong Jin Hun