KLCI drifts lower, tracks losses at regional markets

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 16): The FBM KLCI drifted lower at mid-morning today, tracking losses at most regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI dipped 3.15 points to 1,718.78.

Losers edged gainers by 242 to 236, while 308 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 543.98 million shares valued at RM257.83 million.

The top losers included Petronas Dagangan Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Genting Plantations Bhd, MSM Malaysia Holdings Bhd, UMW Holdings Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Dialog Group Bhd and Hartalega Holdings Bhd.

The actives included Sino Hua-An International Bhd, Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd, Vivocom International Bhd, My E.G. Services Bhd and APFT Bhd.

The gainers included United Plantations Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Tasek Corp Bhd, Scientex Bhd, Petron Malaysia Refining & Marketing Bhd, Hengyuan Refining Co Bhd, Padini Holdings Bhd and Kossan Rubber Industries Bhd.

Asian shares were lower on Monday, brushing off the firmer Wall Street lead as investor caution dominated ahead of the release of key Chinese economic data, which is expected to show signs of a slowdown, according to Reuters.

But while broader concerns about the U.S.-China trade war continue to temper risk appetite, the absence of any escalation of rhetoric out of Beijing or Washington over the past few days is helping support sentiment, as are strong earnings from industrial firms on Wall Street, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders’ brief said that most of the negative trade developments have already priced in at this moment and investors are focusing on the ongoing 2Q18 earnings reporting season, which is forecasted to jump over 20% year-on-year.

It said sentiment is also likely to be cushioned by the latest developments that the U.S. and China are open to resume negotiations after days of exchanging retaliatory threats.

“Dow’s key resistance is situated at 25300-25400 while supports fall on 24000-24300 territory.

“Taking cues from a successful recovery above 1700 and multiple key SMAs, coupled with the easing net outflows post GE14, sentiment on the local bourse is likely improve further this week with key resistance located at 1740-1750 zones.

“Notable risk remains on the potential escalation of US/China tariffs overtures following a relatively softer tone last week. Key supports are at 1690-1700,” it said.