KLCI pares loss but remains 1% in the red

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 9): The FBM KLCI pared some of its loss at the midday break on Monday but remained 1 percent in the red as losses in key blue chips kept the local index in negative zone throughout the morning session, in line with weaker regional sentiment.

At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI was down 17.96 points to 1,789.00. The index had earlier fallen to its intra-morning low of 1,778.99.

The top losers included LPI Capital Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, Petronas Gas Bhd, MSM Malaysia Holdings Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Public Bank Bhd, UMW Holdings Bhd and Hong Leong Capital Bhd.

Privasia Technology Bhd was the most actively traded counter with 96.12 million shares done. The stock jumped 11.11% or 2.5 sen to 25 sen.

The other actives included Asia BioEnergy Technologies Bhd, Wintoni Group Bhd, Eti Tech Corporation Bhd, SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd and Tiger Synergy Bhd.

The gainers included Danainfra Nasional Bhd, Far East Corporation Bhd, Faber Group Bhd, Only World Group Holdings Bhd, Vitrox Corporation Bhd, Apollo Holdings Bhd, Pharmaniaga Holdings Bhd, KLCC Property Holdings Bhd and Kossan Rubber Industries Bhd.

Asian stocks buckled while the dollar held firm on Monday after strong U.S. jobs data fanned expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve may raise interest rates sooner than previously thought, according to Reuters.

Stock markets across Asia, including Japan's Nikkei, Australia, Malaysia and Indonesia fell broadly, with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropping 1.2 percent, it said.

Maybank IB head of retail research and chief chartist Lee Cheng Hooi in a note to clients said the FBM KLCI lost 14.25 points week-on-week last Friday to close at 1,806.96, as some persistent liquidation activities emerged after Bank Negara’s steady OPR policy meeting.

“Take profits on positions at the resistance areas of 1,806 to 1,831.

“The support levels of 1,738 and 1,799 will be weaker,” he said.