KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 28): The FBM KLCI closed 1.02 points or 0.06% lower today after US recession fears led to apparent broad-based selling across Bursa Malaysia amid persistent US-China trade war concerns.
At 5pm, the KLCI closed at 1,589.82 after falling to its intraday low at 1,585.66 in volatile trade when the index vacillated between gains and losses.
The sharp afternoon rise in components Tenaga Nasional Bhd and MISC Bhd's share price mitigated the KLCI's drop.
Bursa's index for small market capitalisation stocks closed down 77.26 points or 0.59% at 12,912.32.
Reuters reported that a deepening of the inversion in the yield curve between the 2-year and 10-year US Treasuries underscored worries about a weakening global economy.
In Malaysia, Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd head of retail research Loui Low told theedgemarkets.com: “Market participants could be taking it as a sign of a potential slowdown in economic activities moving forward, which led to further profit taking activities."
Across Bursa Malaysia, turnover stood at 1.94 billion shares worth RM1.54 billion. Top gainers included Tenaga, Opcom Holdings Bhd and MISC.
Tenaga shares finished up 14 sen or 1.03% at RM13.74 while Opcom rose 18.5 sen or 41.11% to 63.5 sen.
Tenaga and Opcom's share price rise could be due to news that the Malaysian Cabinet had today approved the implementation of the National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP) over a five-year period from this year to 2023 at a cost of RM21.6 billion.
theedgemarkets.com reported today that Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo said the NFCP will provide "nationwide digital connectivity that is robust, pervasive, high-quality and affordable" for all Malaysians.
In response to the news, Hong Leong's Low said: "Tenaga was seen holding up the KLCI, perhaps due to the NFCP, which was approved by the Cabinet.”