KLCI edges higher on improved global sentiment

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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 22): The FBM KLCI rose in early trade on Thursday, in line with the gains at most regional markets, lifted by select blue chips including Tenaga Nasional Bhd and Public Bank Bhd.

At 9.01am, the FBM KLCI added 0.85 points to 1,770.94.

The top gainers included Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Public Bank Bhd, DKSH Holdings Bhd, Mah Sing Group Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, Aeon Credit Services (M) Bhd, Hua Yang Bhd, Eco World Development Group Bhd and Econpile Holdings Bhd.

Asian shares held near six-week highs on Thursday as investors bet the European Central Bank will unveil a bond-buying stimulus programme later in the day in an attempt to revive the flagging euro zone economy, according to Reuters.

The euro treaded water ahead of the ECB decision, while the Canadian dollar took the spotlight after plunging to a nearly six-year low following the Bank of Canada's surprise move to slash its overnight rate to help cushion the economy from recently plunging oil prices, it said.

BIMB Securities Research in a market preview Thursday said that in Asia, key indexes ended mostly higher with Hong Kong and China rose sharply on Wednesday following strong gains on financial sectors while Nikkei ended lower after the BOJ cut its near-term inflation outlook.

Locally, it said the FBM KLCI ended sharply higher, gaining 19.98 points or 1.14% to 1,770.09 with strong buying on plantation and gaming counters.

“Trading participation saw net buying by foreign institutions while local institutions and retail were net sellers.

“We expect the local market to remain positive today in due to overnight gains in the west and positive global sentiment with immediate support at 1,780/90,” it said.