Plantations decline, GPlus steady despite caution

  • Business
  • Wednesday, 28 May 2008

KUALA LUMPUR: Plantations fell in early trade on Wednesday, with KL Kepong and Asiatic among the losers as investors locked in gains while the broader market was lacklustre despite the firmer close on Wall Street.

However, gains in selected counter including Kulim, PLUS and TM International helped lift the KL Composite Index out of the red.

Golden Plus, which saw Bursa Securities cautioning investors over the persistent rise in share price despite the lack of development, was steady in early trade. Since January, the share price had surged 34.9% to Tuesday’s close of RM2.24.

At 10am, the KL Composite Index was up 0.92 point to 1,275.16. Turnover was 48 million shares valued at RM91.4mil. There were 133 gainers, 157 losers and 152 counters unchanged.

In New York, US stocks rose on Tuesday, led by Apple Inc and other technology bellwethers, as investors bet that a sharp drop in oil prices will help shore up consumer and business spending.

A drop of nearly 3% in crude oil to US$128.82 (RM416.73) per barrel was a welcome development after oil prices rose to a record above US$135 barrel last week, fanning worries about inflation, corporate profits and a slowdown in consumer spending.

The Dow Jones industrial average finished up 68.72 points, or 0.55%, at 12,548.35.

Asian markets were mostly lower, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index down 0.13% to 24,250, Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.41% to 13,835.95 and Shanghai’s A Share Index down 0.1% to 3,538.11. However, Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.11% to 3,118.64.

At Bursa, Sime which is scheduled to release its earnings after market close, was unchanged at RM9.50. KL Kepong was the top loser, down 20 sen to RM17.50 while Asiatic, Tradewinds Plantations and Sarawak Oil Palms fell 10 sen each to RM8.50, RM3.98 and RM6.

Department store operators Parkson fell 20 sen to RM6.35 while Aeon gave up 10 sen to RM10.50. Public Bank eased 10 sen to RM11.50.

GPlus eased four sen to RM2.20. GPlus had in the fourth quarter of 2007 posted a net loss of RM5.71mil. However, for FY ended Dec 31, 2007, it posted a net profit of RM8.93mil versus a net loss of RM11.80mil in FY06.

Gamuda rose four sen to RM3.16 and it was the most active with 1.92 million share done. MRCB added one sen to RM1.44 while PLUS gained six sen to RM3.10 and TM International five sen to RM7.40.

MPI rose 20 sen to RM8.55, riding on the positive tech sector outlook in the US while BToto, and Kulim added 10 sen each to RM5.10 and RM8.75. Taliworks gained nine sen to RM2.02.

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