KLCI up 8.75pts on higher oil prices, better-than-expected exports

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 5): The FBM KLCI closed up 8.75 points or 0.53% at 1,664.04 on higher oil prices and Malaysia's better-than-expected export figures.

JF Apex senior analyst Lee Cherng Wee said the 3.4% increase in June exports to RM66.4 billion was higher than JF Apex's expectation of a 0.5% increase.

"The rebound in crude oil prices also contributed to the market's performance today," he told theedgemarkets.com.

At press time, Brent crude oil futures were trading at US$44.04 (RM117.35) per barrel, 3.7% higher compared to US$42.46 per barrel a week ago.

The ringgit fell 0.53% to 4.0293 against the US dollar, and was 0.31% lower at 3.0048 against the Singapore dollar. Against the British pound, the ringgit was down 1.71% at 5.2926.

Regionally, Asian markets were also up, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng index climbing 1.44%, China's CSI 300 inching up 0.12% and South Korea's Kospi rising 0.9%. Japan's Nikkei 225 index was unchanged.

Reuters reported that most Asian stock markets rose today after the Bank of England launched a larger-than-expected post-Brexit stimulus package that sent the pound reeling.

"An overnight rally in crude oil prices also sharpened investors' risk appetite, but caution before the July US non-farm payrolls report later on Friday kept gains in check," the news agency reported.

The local market saw 2.17 billion shares valued at RM1.95 billion traded. Market breadth was mixed, with 444 gainers, 332 losers and 367 counters unchanged.

Top gainers of the day included IOI Corp Bhd, which had its Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil suspension lifted. Other top gainers included United Plantations Bhd and PPB Group Bhd.

Losers included Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd and Ajinomoto (M) Bhd.

The top active counter was Malaysia Building Society Bhd with 113.06 million shares traded.