KLCI holds position above 1,800 level, gains seen capped

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 9): The FBM KLCI managed to hold its position above the 1,800-point level at mid-morning today, but gains were seen capped in line with the subdued regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI gained 1.93 points to 1,806.66.

Gainers led losers by 285 to 226, while 338 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 609.44 million shares valued at RM356.04 million.

The gainers included Far East Holdings Bhd, ViTrox Corp Bhd, Ibraco Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, PMB Technology Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Hong Leong Industries Bhd, Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd and Kluang Rubber Company (Malaya) Bhd,

The actives included Frontken Corp Bhd, My E.G. Services Bhd, GSB Group Bhd, Sumatec Resources Bhd, Radiant Globaltech Bhd and Sapura Energy Bhd.

The decliners included Hong Leong Bank Bhd, Hengyuan Refining Company Bhd, IHH Healthcare Bhd, Suiwah Corp Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, ABM Fujiya Bhd, Alliance Bank Malaysia Bhd, JMR Conglomeration Bhd and SHH Resources Holdings Bhd.

Asian shares were subdued on Thursday after a new round of tit-for-tat tariffs in the US-Sino trade conflict torpedoed oil prices, while the Russian rouble tumbled as the US slapped fresh sanctions on the country, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan barely budged as caution dominated. Japan's Nikkei slipped 0.5%, not helped by a shock slump in core machinery orders, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders' brief said although market sentiment remains sturdy as investors focused on solid quarterly earnings, the recent upward move may attract profit-taking activities, should there be any negative news flows from the trade developments.

"Meanwhile, the proposed tariffs of 25% on the US$200 billion worth of Chinese goods will be on a scheduled hearing during Aug 20-23.

"As investors set aside the trade developments and noticing stronger inflows from foreigners, we may anticipate extended rebound on the broader market.

"However, cautious sentiments will still prevail ahead amid the uncertain August reporting month. Hence, we opine that the KLCI's upside will be limited near 1,800," it said.