KLCI to trend sideways, bargain hunting may keep index around 1,720-level

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KUALA LUMPUR (July 24): The FBM KLCI is expected to trend sideways and hover around the 1,720-point mark today after the weaker overnight close at Wall Street.

Wall Street stocks dropped for a third day on Thursday, sagging under weak corporate profit reports that left the Dow Jones industrials index in the red for 2015, while strong U.S. labor market data supported a weak dollar, according to Reuters.

Oil prices declined, with U.S. crude dropping below $49 per barrel for the first time in more than three months, as gold got a lift from the softer dollar and briefly traded above $1,100 an ounce, it said.

Wall Street's Dow Jones industrial average ended off 119.09 points, or 0.67 percent, at 17,731.95, putting it in the red for the year.

The S&P 500 was down 12 points, or 0.57 percent, to 2,102.15 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 25.36 points, or 0.49 percent, to 5,146.41.

Given the overnight downtrend at Wall Street, sentiment at the local market may stay tepid with the benchmark index hovering around the 1,720-point mark.

Although the FBM KLCI may see losses extended for a third day, there may be some respite and bargain hunting opportunities that could support the local index.