KLCI rises 0.38% on revived ECRL news, firmer regional markets

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 15): The FBM KLCI rose 0.38% at mid-morning today, partially on positive sentiment following news on the revival of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project as well as in tandem with regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI was up 6.23 points to 1,636.40.

Gainers led losers by 300 to 197, while 320 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 712.87 million shares valued at RM296 million.

The top gainers included Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd, United Plantations Bhd, Hong Leong Bank Bhd and Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd.

The actives included Eduspec Holdings Bhd, Sapura Energy Bhd, Dayang Enterprise Holdings Bhd, Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd, IFCA MSC Bhd, Ekovest Bhd and AHB Holdings Bhd.

The decliners included Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Asia Brands Bhd, Lingkaran Trans Kota Holdings Bhd and Dayang.

Asian shares started on a firm footing on Monday and the US dollar eased as risk appetite was whetted by better-than-expected data from China that helped boost confidence about the health of the world economy, according to Reuters.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbed 0.1% with South Korea's Kospi up 0.5%. Australian shares slightly weaker, it said.

Hong Leong IB Research said with the positive start in the US corporate earnings season, it believed the sentiment might extend at least for the near term. However, market participants will be focusing on US-China trade development news in the near term.

"Should any negative surprise emerge from the trade front, it may limit the upside potential on Wall Street. The Dow's resistance is located around 26,951.

"We believe the negative sentiment could be overdone at this juncture and may warrant a technical rebound on the FBM KLCI.

"Meanwhile, with the green light given on ECRL, trading activities on the construction-related stocks are likely to increase over the near term. Besides, we see potential upside on building material (steel and cement related), at least for the near term on the back of this news flow," it said.