FBM KLCI slips with banking stocks as US-China trade spat lingers

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KUALA LUMPUR (June 20): The FBM KLCI slipped 5.61 points or 0.3% to its intraday low after investors sold KLCI-linked banking stocks in the final trading minutes. Lingering concerns on the US-China trade spat continued to dictate world market sentiment.

At Bursa Malaysia, the KLCI closed at 1,709.75 points at 5pm as Public Bank Bhd and Hong Leong Bank Bhd shares ended among Bursa Malaysia top decliners. The KLCI erased gains after rising to its intraday high at 1,728.69 points.

“Banks caused the (KLCI's) downturn in the last half an hour of trading,” Areca Capital Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Danny Wong Teck Meng told theedgemarkets.com.

Yesterday, the KLCI fell 28.07 points as news of the escalating US-China trade spat hit global markets.

Across Bursa Malaysia today, 1.85 billion shares worth RM2.21 billion were traded.

Public Bank shares closed 58 sen lower at RM22.78 while Hong Leong Bank fell 20 sen to RM18.46.

Asian shares rose. In China, the Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite rose 0.27% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 0.77%. Elsewhere, Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 1.24% while South Korea's Kospi climbed 1.02%.

Reuters reported that Asian stock markets bounced on Wednesday following a wobbly morning session that highlighted the lingering anxiety and uncertainty surrounding a heated trade dispute between China and the United States. In Asia, bargain hunters turned up to pick up shares on the cheap after the previous day's rout.