Selling accelerates this afternoon, KLCI down nearly 2%

Selling accelerates this afternoon, KLCI down nearly 2%
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KUALA LUMPUR (March 18): The FBM KLCI fell nearly 2% in afternoon trades today amid a global recession spectre due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

At 3.49pm, the KLCI was down 26.61 points at 1,229.63 points as US stock futures and Asian equities fell on such sentiment.

CNBC reported that Morgan Stanley warned investors that the coronavirus pandemic is fundamentally disrupting the world’s economy.

“Global recession in 2020 is now our base case,” Morgan Stanley chief economist Chetan Ahya wrote in a note.

“With Covid-19 spreading in Europe and the US after hitting Asia, the disruptions and dislocations in the economy and markets will trigger a [year-over-year] contraction in global growth in [the first half of 2020],” the economist was quoted as saying.

UOB Group economists and forex strategists wrote in a note today that they had revised down their economic growth outlook for major economies amid deepening global risks related to Covid-19 and tightening of US dollar liquidity.

"We have revised down our growth outlook for the major economies including US, China, and EU. As such, we are also slashing our 2020 forecasts for Malaysia’s GDP growth to 2.4% (from 4.0% previously),” they said.