KLCI lower as Bursa telecommunication index falls the most

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 9): The FBM KLCI closed 2.41 points or 0.15% lower today as Bursa Malaysia's telecommunication index fell the most among the bourse's indices.

At 5pm, the KLCI closed at 1,641.94 after falling to its intraday low at 1,639.21. KLCI-linked telecommunication stocks Maxis Group Bhd and Axiata Group Bhd ended among top decliners, in percentage terms, among the 30 KLCI stocks.

Maxis closed down 10 sen or 1.75% at RM5.60 while Axiata fell four sen or 0.95% to RM4.19. Maxis and Axiata were the second and third largest decliners respectively after top decliner Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, which dropped 14 sen or 1.98% to RM6.94.

Maxis and Axiata's share price drop today had partly contributed to Bursa's telecommunication index's 5.05-point or 0.74% fall at 681.41.

Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd senior analyst Kenneth Leong said today's weakness in the KLCI "was mainly dragged by the weakness in heavyweight counters from the telco sector".

The KLCI pared losses at 5pm after major Asian stock indices erased intraday losses to close higher.

Japan's Nikkei 225 closed 0.19% higher while South Korea's Kospi was up 0.13%. In China, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.27%.

Reuters reported that Asian shares hit an eight-month high on Tuesday as optimism about Chinese measures to boost economic growth lifted mainland markets, however, worries about US earnings and a crucial Brexit summit this week limited gains.