KLCI falls 1.71% in line with region on global growth woes

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KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 15): The FBM KLCI fell 1.71% at the midday break as a slump in regional markets and falling crude oil prices exarcebated worries over the global growth outlook.

At 12.30pm, the index lost 29.25 points to 1,703.74. It had earlier fallen to its intra-morning low of 1,698.13.

Market breadth was negative with losers thumping gainers by 890 to 45, while 112 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.05 billion shares valued at RM914.31 million.

The top losers included United Plantations Bhd, Kuala Lumpurt Kepong Bhd,Aoen Credit Services (M) Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, LPI Capital Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Batu Kawan Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd and Lafarge Malaysia Bhd.

Sumatec Resources Bhd was the most actively trade counter with 39.59 million shares done. The stock fell 5.41% or one sen to 17.5 sen.

The other actives included Tiger Synergy Bhd, Kronologi Asia Bhd, SapuraKencana Bhd, Berjaya Corporation Bhd, KNM Group Bhd and Perisai Petroleum Teknologi Bhd.

The gainers included Far East Corporation Bhd, Perduren (M) Bhd, Faber Group Bhd, IOI Corporation Bhd, Genting Bhd and Unisem (M) Bhd.

Regionally, Asian shares slipped to nine-month lows on Monday as oil prices sank to fresh 5-1/2 year lows on concerns about a supply glut and slower global growth, hitting stocks of energy and commodity producers and exporters, according to Reuters.

Investors were nervous after U.S. shares posted their biggest weekly fall in 2-1/2-years last week on losses led by energy sector, and as they expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to hint this week it is getting closer to raising interest rates, it said.

Meanwhile, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 1.1 percent to its lowest level since March, said Reuters.

Maybank IB head of retail research and chief chartist Lee Cheng Hooi in a note to clients Monday said the FBM KLCI fell 16.38 points last Friday week-on-week to close at 1,732.99, as heavy selling activities persisted.

He said Volume fell from 1.46 billion to 1.21 billion shares, adding that the index fall was synonymous with a weaker ringgit and global markets. 

“With the plunge that emerged from the 1,896.23 high to the low of 1,730.77, we advise clients to sell at the resistance areas of 1,732 to 1,800. The support levels of 1,660 and 1,730 will witness very weak nibbling activities.

“For this weaker phase, very heavy foreign selling would also be consistent with a firmer spell on the US dollar/ringgit rate and lower crude prices.

“Selling and clearing stocks on any local year-end window dressing rebounds would be very wise indeed. Short-to-medium-term downward targets are at 1,705 and 1,630 for the index,” he said.