KLCI falls 0.77% as Trump's tariffs on China take effect

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 6): The FBM KLCI fell 0.77% at midday break as regional markets slumped, as U.S. tariffs against China took effect this afternoon.

At 12.30pm, the benchmark index lost 12.84 points to 1,677.81.

Losers outpaced gainers by 352 to 182, while 488 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.09 billion shares, valued at RM706.54 million.

The top losers included Public Bank Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, Enra Group Bhd, IJM Plantations Bhd, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd, Aeon Credit Service (M) Bhd, Prestariang Bhd and Axiata Group Bhd.

The actives included Barakah Offshore Bhd, Nova MSC Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, TDM Bhd, Icon Offshore Bhd and Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd.

The gainers included Petronas Dagangan Bhd, Heineken Malaysia Bhd, Caely Holdings Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, PLB Engineering Bhd, PMB Technlogy Bhd and Dialog Group Bhd.

Faltering Chinese markets dented Asian stocks on Friday morning, as time neared when Washington would impose tariffs on Chinese imports, a move many investors fear would trigger a full-scale trade war between the world's two largest economies, according to Reuters.

The U.S. tariffs are due to take effect at 0401 GMT, Reuters said.

At 0315 GMT, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.4% lower, pulling back from a modest early rise. The index has lost 8.9% since June 7, said Reuters.

Kenanga IB Research said Asian markets closed lower with China's market dropping, as investors are preparing for the effect from the imposition of US tariffs on China's imports today.

It said back home, the FBM KLCI bucked for the trend to gain 2.20 points (+0.13%) to close at 1,690.65.

The research house said despite the gains, technical picture remains bearish, as there is no sign of potential rebound at the immediate juncture.

“Momentum indicators appear supportive of the downside outlook, as displayed by the strong downtrend in MACD with key SMAs remains in “Death Crossover”.

“From here, keen investors may buy-on-dips with lower supports at 1,615 (S1) — last retested in late 2016, and 1,600 (S2) psychological support.

“Conversely, resistance can be identified at 1,720 (R1) and possibly 1,760 (R2),” the research house said.