KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 12): The FBM KLCI closed 1.69 points or 0.1% lower after the overnight fall on the Wall Street as investors braced for weak corporate earnings. However, the decline in the market was cushioned by firmer oil price.
The benchmark index closed at 1,667.03 at 5pm.
"The KLCI is not able to bounce off this level as Wall Street fell overnight. The local market, however, is cushioned by the firmer oil price. Despite a slight decline in the oil price yesterday, it is still trading above US$50 (RM209.89) per barrel," TA Securities Holdings Bhd senior technical analyst Stephen Soo told theedgemarkets.com.
Brent crude was trading higher by 0.67% at US$52.76 per barrel while US West Texas Intermediate crude rose by 0.41% to US$51 per barrel as at the time of writing.
Soo added that the market is quite mixed as a result of the trading interests that crept up some of the oil and gas counters.
From the volume, he noted that the market is still cautious and local funds are most likely to be staying on the sidelines.
The KLCI saw 1.6 billion shares worth RM1.84 billion traded. There were 355 gainers and 398 decliners, while 416 counters were unchanged.
The top gainer was Nestle (M) Bhd while the top loser was British American Tobacco (M) Bhd. The most active counter was Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd, with 138.8 million shares traded.
Reuters reported that Hong Kong stocks followed Asian markets lower after US stocks dropped over 1% overnight, with the dollar and Treasury yields rising on growing expectations of a US rate hike in December.
It also said Japanese stocks dropped, retreating from a five-week high after Wall Street was hit by weak corporate earnings overnight and as investors braced for the reporting season.
Across the region, most Asian markets were in the red with Japan's Nikkei 225 falling 1.09%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng dipping 0.6% and Shanghai SE composite slipping 0.22%. South Korea's Kospi managed to edge up by 0.09% while Singapore's STI dropped by 1.37%.