KLCI keeps gains at mid-morning despite sluggish regional markets

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 30): The FBM KLCI kept its gains at mid-morning today despite sluggish sentiment at most regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI rose 5.64 points to 1,819.01.

The top gainers included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Tahphs Group Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, Danainfra Nasional Bhd, Signature International Bhd, LTKM Bhd, Genting Plantations Bhd, Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd and Tenaga Nasional Bhd.

The actively traded stocks included Ingenuity Consolidated Bhd, Privasia Technology Bhd, Berjaya Corporation Bhd, Genetec Technology Bhd, Kanger International Bhd, Asia Bio Energy Technologies Bhd and KNM Group Bhd.

The decliners included Guinness Anchor Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, IJM Corporation Bhd, Keck Seng Bhd, AMMB Holdings Bhd, Uzma Bhd and MMC Corporation Bhd.

Asian markets got off to a sluggish start on Monday in a week book-ended with Easter holidays across the globe and a U.S. jobs report that could impact the timing of the first hike in interest rates there, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was off 0.2 percent. Australia's main index lost 0.8 percent amid weakness in commodity prices, it said.

Given the volatile external markets and nagging domestic issues, KLCI will continue to trade sideways. Key events to focus this week are GST (effective 1 Apr) and US jobs data (3 Apr), said Hong Leong IB Research.

Key resistance at 1820-1832 levels whilst supports fall on 1790-1800, it added.