KLCI falls 0.54%, tracks regional losses

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 15): The FBM KLCI fell 0.54% at mid-morning today, tracking losses at most key regional markets as worries of a trade war dragged equities lower.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI lost 10.07 points to 1,846.99.

Losers led gainers bt 458 to 124, while 271 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 561.84 million shares valued at RM231.58 million.

The top losers included Nestle (M) Bhd, Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, Ajinomoto (M) Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, KESM Industries Bhd, Heineken Malaysia Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, Apex Healthcare Bhd and Hong Leong Bank Bhd.

The actives included YFG Bhd, Daya Materials Bhd, Advance Synergy Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, NWP Holdings Bhd, Vivocom International Holdings Bhd, QES Group Bhd, AirAsia X Bhd, HB Global Ltd and DGB Asia Bhd.

The gainers included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, Magni-Tech Industries Bhd, Hong Leong Industries Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Padini Holdings Bhd and Genetec Technology Bhd.

Stock markets sagged broadly on Thursday while government bonds attracted safe-haven demand amid mounting investor concerns that growing trade tensions would hurt the global economy, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.05 percent, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders’ brief said the US stock markets may trade cautiously as trade war concerns may impact the global economy growth in the long run.

“Also, the FOMC meeting will be the immediate focus. Hence, the Dow could be on a downward bias view at this juncture and is likely to revisit support around 24,500.

“Meanwhile, we think the negative tone on Wall Street could spillover towards Bursa Malaysia, hitting the small cap and lower liners after consumer heavyweights have started the profit taking mode.

“Moreover, investors in town are waiting for more clarity on the dissolution of parliament and the upcoming GE14 schedule. The FBM KLCI’s upside likely to be capped along 1,866-1,872,” it said.