FBM KLCI remains negative over US tapering, Omicron fears

KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI remained in the red at midday break amid an ongoing selldown as investors reacted to the US Federal Reserve chairman's comments that bonds purchasing might be cut back ahead of schedule.

The announcement compounded the weakness on the market after investors were rattled by news of a new strain of Covid-19 identified in several countries.

At 12.30pm, the benchmark index was down 11.24 points to 1,502.74 amid a broad-based sell-off.

In banks, disappointment over CIMB's earnings saw the counter dropping 13 sen to RM5.05. Maybank fell three sen to RM7.95 and Public Bank dropped two sen to RM3.92. Hong Leong Bank bucked the trend to gain 14 sen to RM18.22.

In telcos, Maxis dropped 18 sen to RM4.50, Digi fell three sen to RM4.14 and Axiata slipped one sen to RM3.89.

Glove counters continued to see profit-taking, with Top Glove falling six sen to RM2.87, Hartalega sliding 15 sen to RM6.34 and Supermax shedding six sen to RM1.82.

Of actives, Kanger was unchanged at 3.5 sen, BCM Alliance flat at five sen and ATA IMS down two sen to 43 sen.

Meanwhile, Asian markets bounced following a negative reaction over US Fed chairman Jerome Powell's overnight remarks.

Equities had been sold down previously on fears over the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant, leading to a rebound as investors picked up on bargains.

Japan's Nikkei was up 0.8% and South Korea's Kospi jumped 2.2%.

China's main index was up 0.1% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 1.4%.

Australia's ASX200 dipped 0.2%.
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Bursa Malaysia , FBM KLCI , equities


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