KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 8): The FBM KLCI slid 0.3% as an overwhelming number of counters fell on Bursa Malaysia after the International Monetary Fund (IMF)'s global economic growth downgrade hit investor sentiment world-wide, and ahead of Friday's national budget.
Malaysia's KLCI fell 5.37 points to settle at 1828.17 at 12.30pm. The decline came on losses in oil and gas-related entities like Petronas Gas Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd and SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd.
Across Bursa Malaysia, 1.63 billion shares worth RM1.17 billion changed hands. There were 47 gainers versus 937 decliners.
The IMF has cut its world economic growth forecast to 3.3% this year from 3.4% previously. For 2015, the new growth estimate is 3.8% versus the 4% anticipated earlier.
Asian equities posted losses, while crude oil prices declined on high supply and weak demand concerns.
Analysts said the overnight decline in US stock markets following the IMF downgrade was seen having a negative impact on Malaysian stocks today.
"The local market should extend correction given the overnight US fall and bearish near-term momentum, and market players reduce trading positions amid weak buying momentum," TA Securities Holdings Bhd wrote in a note today.
The top gainer was Goldis Bhd while the leading decliner was Asia File Corp Bhd.
The most-active stock was Sumatec Resources Bhd.
Asian markets fell. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 1.38%, South Korea’s Kospi declined 0.08% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was 0.72% lower.
Reuters reported that Asian stocks fell on Wednesday as worries about waning global growth lifted safe-haven bonds and the yen, while shoving oil prices to their lowest in more than two years.
Government bonds were in big demand as investors wagered global inflation would continue to slow and even put off the day when U.S. interest rates might rise.
Brent crude futures fell to just above $91 a barrel on Wednesday, holding to a months-long tumble in prices as lower economic growth forecasts raised new concerns about global oil demand amid rising U.S. inventory levels.