KLCI closes lower in lacklustre trading amid virus woes

KLCI closes lower in lacklustre trading amid virus woes
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KUALA LUMPUR (July 23): The FBM KLCI closed lower today as investors stayed cautious amid rising number of Covid-19 cases.

The benchmark index ended 4.18 points or 0.27% lower at 1,523.44, after trading between 1,523.16 and 1,529.65.

Malaysia’s daily Covid-19 infections hit a new high of 15,573 today, bringing the nation's cumulative total to 980,491 cases.

Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Loui Low said the continued rise in the number of Covid-19 cases is not a good sign for the market, adding that he expects the negative sentiment to persist.

However, Low is slightly positive on the market movement next week due to the reconvening of Parliament.

“The reopening of Parliament could be a positive sign as some issues may be discussed during the meeting,” he told The Edge.

Overall, market breadth was mixed, with 559 counters ending the day in the green, versus 443 losers and 432 that were unchanged.

A total of 5.42 billion securities were traded at a value of RM3.21 billion, compared with 5.19 billion securities worth RM2.98 billion yesterday.

Among the top losers were Heineken Malaysia Bhd (down 62 sen or 2.7% to RM22.38), Nestle (Malaysia) Bhd (down 60 sen or 0.45% to RM133.30), and Genetec Technology Bhd (down 56 sen or 2.99% to RM18.16).

The top gainers were ViTrox Corp Bhd (up RM1.84 or 10.47% to RM19.42), Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd (up 50 sen or 1.19% to RM42.50), and Unisem (M) Bhd (up 40 sen or 5.16% to RM8.15).

Pasukhas Group Bhd, which saw 232.67 million shares changed hands, remained as the most actively traded stock today.

Most Asian bourses finished lower today as virus worries linger.

South Korea’s Kospi index ended 0.13% higher at 3,254.42, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng closed 1.45% lower at 27,321.98, and the Shanghai Composite index finished 0.68% lower at 3,550.4.

S Kanagaraju