KLCI pares gains as investors turn cautious on muted regional trade

KLCI pares gains as investors turn cautious on muted regional trade
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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 10): The main index at Bursa Malaysia pared some of its gains at mid-morning today as investors turned cautious amid muted trading at regional markets.

Local investors are also awaiting the fourth quarter 2020 gross domestic product (GDP) data to be released by Bank Negara Malaysia on Feb 11.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI was up 1.3 points at 1,587.43. The index had earlier risen to a high of 1,592.27.

Losers overtook gainers by 503 to 317, while 398 counters traded unchanged. Trading volume was 1.41 billion shares valued at RM853.51 million.

The gainers included Widetech (M) Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, RCE Capital Bhd and Ann Joo Resources Bhd.

The actively traded stocks included Dagang NeXchange Bhd, Iris Corp Bhd, Foundpac Group Bhd, Lion Industries Bhd, Yong Tai Bhd, Opcom Holdings Bhd, AirAsia Group Bhd and Melewar Industries Bhd.

The decliners included Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Unisem (M) Bhd, Genetec Technology Bhd, Central Global Bhd, Mega First Corp Bhd, Hengyuan Refining Company Bhd, Pentamaster Corp Bhd and Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd.

Reuters said Asian stocks inched higher on Wednesday, as upbeat Wall Street earnings and optimism about a global recovery supported sentiment, although concerns about the sustainability of a recent risk rally are likely to cap gains.

The Australian S&P/ASX 200 Index was last up 0.5% and e-mini futures for the S&P 500 rose 0.14%. Japan's Nikkei 225 slipped 0.31%, it said.

Inter-Pacific Research Sdn Bhd said the FBM KLCI rebounded yesterday with decent upsides as selected index-linked stocks were chased up on mild bargain-hunting actions, helping to reverse the dour trend that has engulfed the key index over the past few sessions.

In its daily bulletin today, the research house said among the big movers for the day were gaming and banking stocks, but glovemaker stocks continue to retreat.

It said elsewhere, conditions remained mixed with the market breadth nearly equal, while traded volumes were little changed from a day earlier.

The research house said despite yesterday’s rebound, it was of the view that market conditions will remain mostly guarded over the near term as market players wait for the release of the country’s GDP performance tomorrow.

“The broad expectation is for economic conditions to deteriorate again in the final quarter of the year due to the prolonged lockdown conditions.

“In addition, we see market activities remaining largely on the thin side ahead of the Lunar New Year break at the end of the week.

“Consequently, we think that the key index’s upsides could again be limited as it looks to trend within the 1,580 and 1,600 levels for the time being. The interim resistance is at 1,590 points, while the other support is at the 1,573 level,” it said.

Meanwhile, the research house said it sees the mixed trading environment also staying among the lower liners and broader market shares as retail participation is likely to remain indifferent ahead of the Lunar New Year break and the corresponding lack of fresh leads.