KUALA LUMPUR (June 16): Top Glove Corp Bhd’s share price slipped below RM1 on Thursday (June 16) while rival Hartalega Holdings Bhd fell below RM3 despite a broader market rise and as investors evaluated the prospects of Malaysian rubber glove manufacturers at a time when Covid-19-driven demand is seen normalising due to global vaccination progress.
Top Glove finished the day 3.5 sen or 3.47% lower at 97.5 sen with 86.8 million shares traded, after touching an intraday low of 96 sen.
Hartelaga closed down 12 sen or 4.03% at RM2.86, with 10.72 million shares transacted. The stock pared losses after falling to RM2.83 earlier in the day.
FBM KLCI constituents Top Glove and Hartalega are also members of Bursa’s Health Care Index.
The 30-stock KLCI closed up 13.72 points or 0.94% at 1,472.77, while the Health Care gauge finished 0.71% lower.
Bursa said analysts were most bearish on the healthcare sector with 22% of analysts recommending "sell" calls for the sector which includes hospital operators and pharmaceutical companies.
"Within the sector, analysts are bullish on IHH [Healthcare Bhd] which received 75% of 'buy' calls from the total covering analysts.
"Meanwhile, analysts were most bearish on Top Glove which recorded 57% of 'sell' calls from total covering analysts," Bursa’s research arm Bursa Digital Research wrote in a note on June 14.
On Thursday, shares in hospital operator IHH ended up 15 sen or 2.42% at RM6.34, while pharmaceutical manufacturer Pharmaniaga Bhd closed half a sen or 0.81% lower at 61 sen.
According to Bursa, its analyst-consensus compilation is based on the May 2022 corporate financial results reporting season which involved Bursa-listed companies' financial updates for the January-March 2022 quarter.
"For the overall market, analysts are most bullish in these three sectors, namely energy, technology and industrial products,” Bursa said.
On the energy sector, Bursa said 89% of the total analyst recommendations were "buy" calls while the remaining 11% had "hold" calls.
Within the technology segment, Bursa said 85% of the total analyst recommendations were "buy" recommendations, 14% had "hold" calls while 1% had "sell" recommendations.
For the industrial products sector, Bursa said 72% of the total analyst recommendations were "buy" calls, 18% had "hold" recommendations while 10% had "sell" calls.
The broader stock market rose on Thursday after the US raised interest rates to tame inflation. It was reported that Asian stocks rose on Thursday, while longer-dated US government bond yields fell and the US dollar was down from two-decade highs after the US Federal Reserve delivered an aggressive rate hike and cut its growth projections.
"The US central bank on Wednesday approved its biggest interest rate hike since 1994, lifting the target federal funds rate by 75 basis points to a range of between 1.5% and 1.75%. Fed officials also see further steady rises this year, targeting a federal funds rate of 3.4% by year-end,” Reuters reported.