KLCI remains in the red as sentiment turns negative

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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 28): The FBM KLCI remained in the red at mid-morning today as sentiment turned negative at the local bourse, tracking losses at regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI was down 3.87 points to 1,867.59.

Losers outpaced gainers by 567 to 168, while 266 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 677.63 million shares valued at RM430.59 million.

The top losers included Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, Hengyuan Refining Co Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, Thong Guan Industries Bhd, Lysaght Galvanized Steel Bhd, AirAsia Bhd, Petron Malaysia Refining & Marketing Bhd and IQ Group Holdings Bhd.

The actives included Perisai Petroleum Teknologi Bhd, UMW Oil & Gas Corp Bhd, Sino Hua-An International Bhd, AirAsia X Bhd, Malaysia Steel Works (KL) Bhd, Green Packet Bhd, Diversified Gateway Solutions Bhd and AirAsia.

The gainers included British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Batu Kawan Bhd, Pharmaniaga Bhd, New Hoong Fatt Holdings Bhd and Kwantas Corp Bhd.

Asian shares faltered on Wednesday and bonds were sold off as risk appetite soured after comments from new Federal Reserve (Fed) chair Jerome Powell revived fears about faster rate rises in the United States, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.2%, on track for a second straight day of losses, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research in a traders' brief said in the US, the cautious tone may prevail over the near term as Powell's statement was pointing towards a healthy recovery in the economy and traders could be picking up clues on the potential fourth rate hike this year.

"Meanwhile, stocks on the local front could take a mild breather following the weaker trading tone on Wall Street, coupled with the negative local market breadth as small caps and lower liners were being sold down.

"Nevertheless, based on the positive technicals and foreign inflows, downside of the FBM KLCI is limited around 1,840," it said.