KLCI slips further at midday

KUALA LUMPUR: The stock market continued to decline on Tuesday with FBM KLCI down 6.51 points, or 0.38%, to 1,690.8 points at midday, as falling oil prices weighed on stock markets around the world.

This follows the local bourse’s 35.68 points fall to 1,697.31 at the close on Monday, the first time it had dipped below the 1,700 mark since Aug 2013.

BIMB Securities Research reported that foreign selling was again evident yesterday, with another net outflow of RM179.2mil, adding it expected the FBMKLCI to consolidate further today. 

It pegged the immediate support level at 1,690 amid some bargain-hunting activities.

Today, turnover at midday was at 834.63 million shares valued at RM792.11mil.  

There were 247 gainers, 516 losers and 262 stocks unchanged.

At Bursa Malaysia, the banks led the decline with Maybank losing 28 sen to RM8.32, wiping 4.583 points from the index, followed by RHB Capital which fell to 7.09 from 7.45 (taking 1.627 points) and CIMB which lost seven sen to RM5.38 (-1.036 points).

Gainers included Carlsberg, which added 26 sen to RM11.76; Apex Healthcare up 20 sen to RM3.30; while United Plantation and Shell were also up 20 sen each to RM24 and RM5.10 respectively.

Decliners included Dutch Lady (down RM1 to RM43.4), British American Tobacco (down 72 sen to RM66), PIE Industrial (down 48 sen to RM5.57) and RHB Capital (down 36 sen to RM7.09).

Meanwhile, the AFP reported Asian markets mostly slipped Tuesday, following a sell-off in Europe and the US, as oil prices plunged to more than five-year lows and data indicated Chinese manufacturing activity shrank in December. The flash HSBC/Markit manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) for China fell to 49.5 in December from November's final reading of 50.

Tokyo tumbled 1.8%, Hong Kong lost 0.65% and Seoul was 0.62% lower.  Singapore’s Straits Times Index lost 1.73% to 3,237.22.

Shanghai’s Composite Index, however, was up 0.74% to 2,975.37.

Taiwan’s Taiex added 0.2% to 9,003.82.

Crude oil prices continued to decline with Brent down 25 cents to US$60.81, while WTI lost 31 cents to US$55.60.

Spot gold added US$4.30 to US$1,198 an ounce.

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