Markets ease, Maybank, IOI Corp down, Gamuda up

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KUALA LUMPUR: Hong Kong, Singapore and the local bourse gave up part of their recent gains to reverse into negative territory at the midday break on March 27 as investors locked in their gains ahead of the weekend. At Bursa, Maybank, IOI Corp, TM International and Proton ended the morning session slightly lower but Gamuda held on to part of its early gains, despite mixed outlook from analysts, following its 2Q earnings. At 12.30pm, the KL Composite Index fell 1.41 points to 884.06. Turnover was 263.78 million shares valued at RM319.6 million. There were 121 gainers, 256 losers and 163 stocks unchanged. Except for Japan and Shanghai, where the Nikkei 225 rose 0.71% to 8,697.92 and Shanghai’s Composite Index gaining 0.54% to 2,374.47 but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.5% to 14,045.02 and Singapore’s Straits Times Index shed 0.9% to 1,742.41. Light crude oil fell 48 cents to US$53.86 and crude palm oil futures lost RM23 to RM2,012. At Bursa Malaysia, Maybank fell eight sen to RM4.30, Tenaga shed five sen to RM6.05 and Proton two sen lower to RM2.38. TMI eased one sen to RM2.38. Plantation stocks were mixed, with IOI Corp down four sen to RM3.94 but KL Kepong rose 10 sen to RM10.80 and Sime Darby five sen higher to RM5.85. Teck Guan was the top loser, down 16 sen to 64 sen, Shell 15 sen to RM9.60 while JM and MISC foreign fell 10 sen each to RM4.18 and RM8.40. Tasco was traded higher after Japan’s NYK shipping group raised its stake in the company to 61.32% from 27.74%. It rose 7.5 sen to 64 sen. Public Bank gained 10 sen to RM7.55 while Allianz jumped 16 sen to RM3.16 and Tanjong 10 sen higher to RM14.30.