KLCI up on US share gain; ringgit at 3.9525 vs US dollar

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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 15): The FBM KLCI climbed 3.24 points or 0.2% as the ringgit strengthened today and after US shares rose to record closing highs on Friday (Jan 12).
At 5pm today, the KLCI closed at 1,825.91 points. Across Bursa Malaysia, 5.4 billion shares worth RM3.33 billion changed hands.

In currency markets, the ringgit was traded at its strongest level against the US dollar today at 3.9525. Over the last one year, the exchange rate was between 3.9525 and 4.4707.

“(In Malaysia) There is a broader appeal among investors for bigger selection of stocks. It’s a combination of these factors — the upcoming election, a continuation of inflows from foreign funds and a strong ringgit," Inter-Pacific Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Pong Teng Siew told theedgemarkets.com.

“There is also the (Malaysia corporate) financial results season coming ahead, with optimism that it would be better than the previous quarter which posted a dismal 4-5% earnings growth," Pong said.

Today, Malaysian and Asian share markets rose after US equities' rise on Friday. US markets were closed today (Monday, Jan 15) for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day holiday.
Reuters reported that Asian shares hit historic highs on Monday after Wall Street extended its record-breaking run, while the US dollar retreat continued as investors priced in the risk of tighter policies elsewhere in the developed world.

It was reported thar Wall Street continued its rally on Friday with record closing highs as the fourth-quarter earnings season kicked off with solid results from banks and robust retail sales drove investor optimism about economic growth. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 228.46 points, or 0.89 percent, to 25,803.19, the S&P 500 gained 18.68 points, or 0.67 percent, to 2,786.24 and the Nasdaq Composite added 49.29 points, or 0.68 percent, to 7,261.06.