KLCI struggles to sustain gains

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 10): The FBM KLCI rose at mid-morning but struggled to breach the 1,800-point level as teh lack of fresh domestic catalysts capped the market’s gains.

At 10.01am, the FBM KLCI was up 1.82 points to 1,793.56.

The top gainers included LTKM Bhd, Suria Capital Bhd, Press Metal Bhd, Genting Plantations Bhd, Brahim’s Holdings Bhd, C.I Holdings Bhd, Pharmaniaga Holdings Bhd, MISC Bhd, Guiness Anchor Bhd and Tenaga Nasional Bhd.

The actives included Xinghe Holdings Bhd, Wintoni Group Bhd, Eti Tech Corporation Bhd, Privasia Technology Bhd, KNM Group Bhd, Frontken Corporation Bhd and Sumatec Resources Bhd.

The decliners included Pos Malaysia Bhd, Puncak Niaga Holdings Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd, IOI Corporation Bhd, Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, British American Tobacco (M) Bhd, BLD Plantations Bhd and RHB Capital Bhd.

The U.S. dollar held near multi-year highs on the yen and euro on Tuesday amid starkly different outlooks for global interest rates, while Asian investors braced for more economic news from China, according to Reuters.

The dollar was nearing major chart barriers against the yen, having hit a three-month high at 121.46 yen. A break of 121.84 would take it to territory not visited since July 2007, it said.

JF Apex Securities Research said concerns of earlier-than-expected US interest rate hike saw European and Asian markets fall yesterday except for Shanghai.

However, it said US equities rebounded and closed higher as fears of rate hike eased.

“Back home, the FBM KLCI tumbled 15.22 points to 1791.74 points yesterday. The index recovered some ground after coming off its intraday low off 1779 points.

“We expect consolidation above its immediate support of 1780 points with a bearish bias as investors await China's February CPI announcement today,” it said.