KLCI remains in negative zone as sentiment stays tepid

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 18): The FBM KLCI remained in negative territory, tracking regional markets, as sentiment stayed tepid ahead of the tabling of the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP) mid-term review later today.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI dipped 1.44 points to 1,739.15.

Losers led gainers by 249 to 191, while 222 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 485.48 million shares valued at RM277.49 million.

The losers included Nestle (M) Bhd, KESM Industries Bhd, Genting Plantations Bhd, Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd and Kimlun Corp Bhd.

The actives included Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd, Tiger Synergy Bhd, Barakah Offshore Petroleum Bhd, Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd, George Kent (M) Bhd, Nova MSC Bhd and Pinehill Pacific Bhd.

The gainers included Heineken Malaysia Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, Supermax Corp Bhd, YSP Southeast Asia Holding Bhd, SAM Engineering & Equipment (M) Bhd, Serba Dinamik Holdings Bhd, George Kent, Cypark Resources Bhd and Uchi Technologies Bhd.

Asian stocks were capped and the US dollar rose to a one week-high in early Thursday trade after the minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest meeting showed broad agreement among board members on the need to raise borrowing costs further, according to Reuters.

The spectre of rising US dollar yields, which along with global trade tensions were at the centre of last week's global equities rout, kept riskier appetite in check in Asia, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders' brief said the Dow is likely to extend its consolidation mode on the back of upcoming US mid-term election and ongoing 3Q18 earnings season.

"Moreover, lingering concerns over US-China trade discussions progress and geopolitical tensions in Italy and Middle East coupled with the ascent of US 10Y bond yields could pose further downside risks to Wall St. Key supports are 24,200-24,800 while resistance are near 26,000-26,300 levels.

"Ahead of the 11MP mid-term review today and the Budget 2019 coupled with overnight Dow's retreat, risk off mode prevails and any rebound would be capped at 1,755 zones (key supports: 1,683-1,700).

"Market participants could be staying [on the] sidelines due to lack of strong rerating catalysts and persistent foreign selling of RM32 million yesterday (its 10th straight day), amounting to a massive RM1.18 billion outflow in October against RM66 million inflow in September," it said.