KUALA LUMPUR (July 6): The FBM KLCI fell 1% while the ringgit weakened above the 3.8000 level against the US dollar, as Greece's debt crisis and Malaysian political woes dented market sentiment.
Malaysia's KLCI settled at 1,717.05 points at 5pm, after paring losses from an intraday low of 1,706.6. The ringgit weakened to 3.8092 versus the US dollar.
Reuters reported most Southeast Asian stock markets fell over 1 percent on Monday, as worries over the Greek debt crisis sparked selling across major sharemarkets, with the Malaysian index sliding to a near one-week low, amid graft allegations linked to the Prime Minister.
It was reported that the ringgit hit a 16-year low, after reports linked the country's prime minister to probes into alleged corruption.
Analysts told theedgemarkets.com that the Malaysian share market sentiment was less optimistic, due to the confluence of global and domestic factors.
JF Apex Securities research head Lee Chung Cheng said investors were concerned about the possibility of Greece leaving the euro region and the timing of US interest rate hikes.
“We expect the KLCI to be trading sideways with negative bias in the near term, due to worries on 'Grexit', US rate hike (expected in Sept), local politicking and corruption allegations surrounding 1MDB,” Lee said.
Overall, Bursa Malaysia saw 1.54 billion shares, valued at RM1.409 billion, traded. There were 158 gainers and 646 decliners.
Top gainers include Sam Engineering & Equipment (M) Bhd and Country View Bhd. Major decliners included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd and United Plantations Bhd.
The most actively-traded stock today was Multi Sports Holdings Bhd and KNM Group Bhd.
Asian share markets fell. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 3.18%, Japan’s Nikkei dropped 2.08%, while South Korea’s Kospi declined 2.4%.
Reuters reported shares fell in Europe and Asia, the euro stumbled and yields on weaker euro zone economies' bonds rose after Greece overwhelmingly voted against conditions for a rescue package, but there was no rout and contagion was limited.