KLCI rebounds 0.81% on gains in banking counters

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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 3): The FBM KLCI snapped its six-day losing streak and rebounded 0.81% today, supported by gains in banking stocks, amid better performance in regional and US markets.

At 5pm, the benchmark index gained 13.49 points or 0.81%, to settle at 1,677.56 points.

Areca Capital Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Danny Wong said blue chip stocks are in focus today, particularly banking stocks.

"The KLCI was up today on support of banking stocks such as Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd and CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. Broadly, blue chips were performing better, which could be due to buying interest by foreign funds," he said.

He added that the downside for the market is limited in the near term, in anticipation of ValueCap Sdn Bhd's first investment of RM6 billion slated for late-November, out of the total RM20 billion allocated for the local equity market.

"ValueCap will start investing in November, so market participants are now positioning themselves ahead of the first injection," said Wong.

Across Bursa Malaysia, some 2.8 billion shares valued at RM2.26 billion were exchanged. Gainers outnumbered decliners at 521 against 357, while 339 counters were unchanged.

Leading the gainers were British American Tobacco (Malaysia) Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd and PIE Industrial Bhd, while Tasek Corp Bhd led the decliners. The most actively traded counter was Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd.

Asian markets were largely up today: Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.89%, while South Korea's Kospi rose 0.65%. Japan's markets were close for holiday.

Reuters reported that Asian stocks rose on Tuesday helped by buoyant US markets and recent data that indicated the global economy may have turned a corner, though wary central banks signalled a recovery may be anything but durable.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan, which had been in the red for the past five days, rose 1.4%. While it has gained more than 11% since the end of September, it is still down more than 10% this year.

(Note: The Edge Research's fundamental score reflects a company's profitability and balance sheet strength, calculated based on historical numbers. The valuation score determines if a stock is attractively valued or not, also based on historical numbers. A score of 3 suggests strong fundamentals and attractive valuations.)