KLCI reverses loss, ticks up in line with region

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 8): The FBM KLCI reversed its earlier loss and edged up at mid-morning today, in line with the gains at regional markets.

At 10.20am, the FBM KLCI was up 1.89 points to 1,643.70. The index had earlier slipped to a low of 1,641.04.

Gainers led losers by 345 to 278, while 319 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.24 billion shares valued at RM518.15 million.

The gainers included Nestle (M) Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, PPB Group Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd, Tasek Corp Bhd, Hengyuan Refining Company Bhd and Pentamaster Corp Bhd.

The actives included Sapura Energy Bhd, Priceworth International Bhd, KNM Group Bhd, Talam Transform Bhd, Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd, Bumi Armada Bhd and My EG Services Bhd.

The decliners included Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, KESM Industries Bhd, Heineken Malaysia Bhd, Public Bank Bhd, Wang-Zheng Bhd, Peterlabs Holdings Bhd, Transocean Holdings Bhd and Daibochi Bhd.

Asian shares edged higher on Monday as investors cheered a much-needed rebound in US payrolls, while looking forward to more policy stimulus in China, according to Reuters.

In a document published on the central government's website late on Sunday, Beijing said it would step up its policy of targeted cuts to banks' required reserve ratios to encourage financing for small and medium-sized businesses, the newswire said.

Hong Leong IB Research said on Wall Street, market participants will be trading on a cautious tone awaiting the conclusion on the trade deal as US President Donald Trump has given a timeline of around four weeks before any trade deal or agreement is being released.

"Also, should there be any summit date (between Trump and [China] President Xi [Jinping]) being announced in the near term, that may provide a boost to the stock markets. The Dow could be ranging between the 26,000-26,500 this week.

"Tracking the healthy performance on Wall Street, we believe market sentiment should turn positive in tandem with the slight [optimism] on the trade front with both the US and China officials stating positive comments on the trade discussions last week.

"Also, with the anticipation of the potential revival of ECRL in the near term, we expect construction stocks to trade actively moving forward. Also, O&G is likely to be focused as Brent oil prices surged above US$70 last week," it said.