March 12: Most Southeast Asian stocks ended weaker on Wednesday on concerns over sluggish economic growth in China and the US, with foreign investors exiting Malaysian shares.
Philippines stock index fell 1%, after hitting a more than four-month high in the previous session, Singapore shares lost 1%, Thailand closed 0.6% down, Malaysia lost 0.5%, and Indonesia ended 0.4% weaker.
Weak Chinese exports, which tumbled in February, added to fears of a slowdown in the world's second-largest economy, while US economic data gave no clear indication of whether the world's largest economy's troubles were merely weather-related or something more worrisome.
Analysts in Bangkok said the expected interest rate cut by the central bank to spark growth in a sluggish economy helped to cap heavy losses.
In terms of valuation, Thailand stocks are cheaper with a 12-month forward price-to-earning ratio at 12.6, lower than Philippines's 16.9, Malaysia's 15.3, Indonesia's 14.2, and Singapore's 13.7, Thomson Reuters StarMine data showed.
Andre Varian, a research analyst with Jakarta-based broker Ciptadana Securities said Indonesian stocks are still attractive due to promising economic growth coming from huge domestic consumption, demographic bonus, relatively sturdy economic fundamentals in the Asean region.
"However, we never deny that the global impact of such on-going recession in the euro area and slowing down economic growth in China still represent a prominent constraint to stifle our capital market growth," Varian said.
Kuala Lumpur suffered US$121.51 million net foreign outflow on Wednesday, while Jakarta and Bangkok witnesses a net outflow of US$11.53mil and US$6.97mil respectively on Wednesday. Manila, however, saw an inflow of $7.63 million.
Bucking the trend, Vietnam's benchmark VN Index closed up 0.3%, gaining for a sixth consecutive session,with property and energy stocks providing support, but greater selling erased earlier gains.
SOUTH-EAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETSChange on day
Market Current Prev Close Pct MoveTR SE Asia Index* 401.09 404.57 -0.86
Singapore 3097.43 3129.40 -1.02
Kuala Lumpur 1818.60 1828.55 -0.54
Bangkok 1356.42 1364.28 -0.58
Jakarta 4684.39 4704.21 -0.42
Manila 6462.47 6529.58 -1.03
Ho Chi Minh 590.02 588.50 +0.26
Change on year
Market Current End 2013 Pct Move
TR SE Asia Index* 401.09 388.37 +3.28
Singapore 3097.43 3167.43 -2.21
Kuala Lumpu 1818.60 1866.96 -2.59
Bangkok 1356.42 1298.71 +4.44
Jakarta 4684.39 4274.18 +9.60
Manila 6462.47 5889.83 +9.72
Ho Chi Minh 590.02 504.63 +16.92
* The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
Stock Market Volume (shares)
Market Current Volume Average Volume 30 days
Singapore 234,174,200 229,091,143
Kuala Lumpur 150,885,200 131,972,290
Bangkok 5,342,090 5,645,279
Jakarta 5,066,424,800 3,529,934,283
Manila 89,100 83,500
Ho Chi Minh 177,884 136,322 - Reuters