Oil and gas stocks top gainers

KUALA LUMPUR: Buying interest in oil and gas (O&G) stocks perked up in Monday’s mid-morning trade as investors tried to take a longer view of the oil industry despite the 50% fall in crude oil prices since June 2014.

At 10.30am, the FBM KLCI was up 4.5 points or 0.26% to 1,748.07. Turnover was 530.21 million shares valued at RM295.65mil. There were 358 gainers, 166 losers and 245 counters unchanged.

Reuters reported benchmark Brent crude futures were trading at US$49.83 per barrel at 0125 GMT, down 34 cents since their last settlement. U.S. crude was trading down 41 cents at US$48.28 a barrel.

Oil prices have dropped by more than half since last June as production around the world has soared while demand slows. Although the International Energy Agency (IEA) said that a reversal in trend was possible this year, it added that prices may fall further before the market begins to rise again.

At Bursa Malaysia, Uzma rose 15 sen to RM1.88 after analysts turned more upbeat about the company.

Coastal Contracts rose 12 sen to RM2.78, SapuraKencana Petroleum gained 11 sen to RM2.61 and UMW O&G gained 10 sen to RM2.70.

KNM added one sen to 45 sen in active trade while Sumatec gained 0.5 sen to 21 sen.

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