KLCI marks second day of gain after retracing earlier losses

KLCI marks second day of gain after retracing earlier losses
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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 5): The FBM KLCI ended the day with a slight gain today — in line with other key Asian markets — marking its second straight day in positive territory.

The benchmark index was trading mostly in the red earlier today as gains made on Tuesday were erased by profit taking until trading activities in the latter part of the day helped push it back into positive territory.

At 5pm, the KLCI, which hit an intra-day low of 1,529.1 points, was up 0.99 points or 0.06% at 1,536.79. Its highest for the day was 1,539.89.

There were 491 gainers versus 290 losers across the local bourse while 472 stocks remained unchanged. Some 3.06 billion shares worth RM2.68 billion were traded.

Inter-Pacific Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Victor Wan said there was profit taking during the early trading session today, which put some selling pressure on the KLCI.

Some mild bargain hunting appeared later in the day, which lifted the index into positive territory, he said.

“Market conditions remain fluid, meaning it can go either way at this point, due to the uncertainty from the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak,” Wan added.

Among the top gainers that lifted the benchmark index was Dialog Group Bhd, which rose nine sen or 2.72% to close at RM3.40 today, followed by Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, which surged 56 sen or 2.45% to close at RM23.44.

Elsewhere, Japan's Nikkei 225 gained 1.02% and South Korea's Kospi rose 0.36%, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.42% and China's Hang Seng index climbed 1.25%.

Reuters reported that Asian stocks steadied on Wednesday as Chinese shares moved higher on hopes of additional stimulus to cushion the economic blow from the coronavirus outbreak, but added that risks remained as the illness continued to spread and the death toll neared 500.