KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 20): After hovering below the 1,600 psychological level for a month, the FBM KLCI today closed 14.46 points or 0.91% higher, mainly supported by window dressing activities.
At 5pm, the KLCI closed at an intraday high of 1,610.18 points, the highest in almost four months — surpassing the 1,610 resistance level at the 11th hour.
Areca Capital Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Danny Wong Teck Meng told theedgemarkets.com that the run-up was largely due to window dressing.
"As expected, with less than ten business days until the year-end, that (gains in the KLCI today) would be due to window-dressing," Wong said.
Going forward, he is also expecting rotational play involving the large-caps or index-linked counters as sentiments begin to improve, with positive development from the trade truce between the US and China, and Brexit.
Among the 30 component stocks, PPB Group Bhd led the top gainers, followed by Petronas Gas Bhd (PetGas) and IOI Corp Bhd.
PPB closed RM1.06 or 5.61% higher at RM19.96 today. PetGas was up 84 sen or 5% to close at RM17.64, while IOI Corp grew 22 sen or 4.78% to settle at RM4.82.
Today, Bursa Malaysia saw 2.17 billion shares, worth RM2.39 billion, traded. Gainers led losers by 385 to 356, while 447 counters remained unchanged.
Across in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 dropped 0.2%, South Korea's Kospi grew 0.35% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.25%.
Reuters reported that Asian shares snoozed near 18-month highs on Friday as trade thinned just before Christmas and investors seemed content to digest the chunky gains already made so far this month.
Sentiment had been bolstered after US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the US and China would sign their Phase One trade pact in early January, the newswire wrote, adding that Mnuchin said it was completely finished and just undergoing a technical "scrub", though Beijing has so far dodged all details of the deal.
The US House of Representatives also overwhelmingly approved a new North American deal that leaves US$1.2 trillion in annual US-Mexico-Canada trade flows largely intact, Reuters added.