KLCI reverses earlier loss, regional markets stay tentative

KLCI reverses earlier loss, regional markets stay tentative
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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 17): The FBM KLCI reversed its earlier loss and clawed higher in the mid-morning today, lifted by select index-linked stocks, against a backdrop of tentative regional markets.

At 10am, the KLCI was up 2.50 points at 1,567.09. The index earlier fell to a low of 1,543.04.

Market breadth was negative with losers leading gainers by 561 to 256, while 362 counters traded unchanged. Trading volume was 2.2 billion shares valued at RM1.41 billion.

The top gainers included Nestle (Malaysia) Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Teck Guan Perdana Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, LPI Capital Bhd and Sime Darby Plantation Bhd.

The actively traded stocks included Iris Corp Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, Pegasus Heights Bhd, Nexgram Holdings Bhd, DGB Asia Bhd, Trive Property Group Bhd, Lambo Group Bhd, AT Systematization Bhd and XOX Bhd.

The decliners included Supermax Corp Bhd, Top Glove Corp Bhd, Hartalega Holdings Bhd, Kossan Rubber Industries Bhd, ViTrox Corp Bhd, Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd and Rubberex Corp (M) Bhd.

Reuters said Asian shares dozed near recent highs in quiet trade today as investors waited to see if the recent sell-off of longer-dated US Treasuries would extend, and maybe take some pressure off the beleaguered US dollar.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.02% lower at 562, but still eyeing the January top of 574.52, it said.

Hong Leong Investment Bank (HLIB) Research said this week, the KLCI is expected to continue its range-bound consolidation amid domestic political uncertainties, a weak August reporting season, the increasing numbers of new Covid-19 clusters and the detection of virus mutation D614G (10 times easier to infect others) in Malaysia, as well as intensified US-China geopolitical tension.

It said key supports are situated at 1,511-1,539, while resistances are pegged at the 1,584-1,591-1,600 levels.

“Sentiment-wise, overall market breadth would remain subdued amid heavy losses on the FBMACE (-6.9% week-on-week [w-o-w]) and FBMSCAP (-4.6% w-o-w) indices, coupled with a waning average daily value of RM6.7 billion (-24.7% w-o-w).

“We expect extended consolidation of penny stocks, ACE [Market-listed shares] and small caps to consolidate and neutralise the excessive overbought conditions,” it said.