KLCI drops 0.39% in line with sombre regional mood

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 27): The FBM KLCI dropped 0.39% at mid-morning today, tracking sombre regional markets with local investor sentiment staying tepid as Malaysian bonds were kept on review for a downgrade by index provider FTSE Russell.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI lost 6.11 points to 1,586.89.

Losers led gainers by 259 to 181, while 279 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 458.18 million shares valued at RM198.11 million.

The losers included Nestle (M) Bhd, Aeon Credit Service (M) Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Hai-O Enterprise Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, United Malacca Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Mulpha International Bhd, Hap Seng Consolidated Bhd and Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd.

The actives included Green Packet Bhd, MNC Wireless Bhd, Sumatec Resources Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, Prinsiptek Corp Bhd, Bumi Armada Bhd, MTAG Group Bhd and Prestariang Bhd.

The gainers included Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, Scientex Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, MISC Bhd and Turbo-Mech Bhd.

Asian shares were on course for a second straight week of losses on Friday as the release of a whistleblower complaint against US President Donald Trump heightened uncertainties about the global economy, already reeling from Sino-US trade war, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.09%, having fallen 1.4% so far this week, while Japan's Nikkei slid 0.54%, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research maintained its view that the Dow will continue to trend in range bound mode (26,500-27,400 zones) as investors digest the divided views on the next course of actions by the US Federal Reserve in the Oct 30-31 and Dec 10-11 Federal Open Market Committee meetings, as well as the close monitoring of the Trump impeachment development.

"In addition, traders will be shifting their attention towards the crucial US-China trade negotiation in early October as well as the upcoming US 3Q19 reporting season in mid-October (consensus is predicting the S&P 500 earnings to decline 4.8% year-on-year from a flat performance in 1Q and 2Q).

"Following FTSE Russell's decision to retain Malaysian government bonds on the Watch List for potential downgrade in the WGBI (pending the next review in March 2020) and continued overnight Wall Street volatility, trading sentiment on Bursa Malaysia is likely to remain tepid as investors await the crucial US-China trade talks in October and the tabling of Budget 2020 on Oct 11.

"KLCI is likely to engage in sideways trading around 1,581-1,595 zones," it said.