KLCI gains 0.51%; ringgit at lowest since Dec 2006

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KUALA LUMPUR (Mar 18): The FBM KLCI rose 0.51% at the midday break on Wednesday, lifted by select blue chips while the ringgit slipped to its lowest level in eight years.

At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI rose 9.57 points to 1,797.44.

Market breadth however was weaker with 459 losers and 237 gainers, while 271 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.13 billion shares valued at RM707.94 million.

The ringgit was traded at its lowest in eight years and was quoted at 3.7010 versus the greenback.

The top gainers on Bursa Malaysia included Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Globetronics Technology Bhd, Genting Bhd, Magni-Tech Industries Bhd, Panasonic Malaysia Manufacturing Bhd, C.I Holdings Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Hong Leong Bank Bhd and LTKM Bhd.

The actively traded stocks included Wintoni Group Bhd, The Media Shoppe Bhd, Ingenuity Solutions Bhd, Sumatec Resources Bhd, Privasia Technology Bhd, Eti Tech Corportation Bhd, Genetec Technology Bhd and Pasukhas Group Bhd.

The top losers included DKSH Holdings (M) Bhd, Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation Bhd, Batu Kawan Bhd, Guinness Anchor Bhd, Pestech International Bhd, Jaya Tiasa Holdings Bhd, APM Aumotive Bhd and Wintoni.

Asian stocks were mixed and the dollar marked time on Wednesday, with markets waiting for the U.S. Federal Reserve's policy statement due later in the session for clues to when the Fed will hike interest rates, according to Reuters.

Indonesian, Singaporean and Japanese shares fell 0.1 percent, while Australian stocks dropped 0.5 percent, it said.

Maybank IB head of retail research and chief chartist Lee Cheng Hooi in a note to clients today said the FBM KLCI advanced 7.33 points to 1,787.87 yesterday, while the FBMEMAS and FBM100 also closed higher by 33.96 points and 37.15 points, respectively.

“We expect weak nibbling at the supports of 1,770 to 1,787, whilst very heavy liquidation activities cap all rebounds at the resistances of 1,789 and 1,808,” he said.