KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI was up nearly two points at midday on Monday, underpinned by gains in Petronas-owned stocks but a lack of follow through buying saw the broader market turning mixed.
At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI was up 1.7 points or 0.09% to 1,805.35, off the early high of 1,811. Turnover was 1.132 billion shares valued at RM679.46mil. There were 351 gainers, 314 losers and 302 stocks unchanged.
The US dollar weakened against the major currencies. The ringgit firmed up against the greenback to 3.6830 from the previous close of 3.7333.
Reuters reported Asian shares started the week on a strong note on Monday after a weaker US dollar helped fuel solid gains on Wall Street. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added about 0.4%.
At Bursa, Petronas Chemicals rose 23 sen to RM5.35 and Petronas Dagangan added 22 sen to RM19.38.
Hinza Properties jumped 26 sen to RM2.65 following a takeover exercise by its major shareholder at RM2.50 a share.
Opcom surged 18.5 sen to RM1.13 after Tan Sri Mokhzani Mahathir was appointed its new chief executive officer last Friday. His younger brother Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir is a substantial shareholder in the company.
Among the plantations, KL Kepong added 24 sen to RM22.76. Crude palm oil for third month delivery rose RM42 to RM2,202 per tonne.
Among the semiconductor companies, Globetronics added 16 sen to RM5.46 and MPI 14 sen higher at RM6.78.
Parkson was steadier at RM2.10, up 11 sen, after the company said its fundamentals were intact in a move to reassure investors following the recent selling pressure.
Hong Leong Capital fell 48 sen to RM9.80 and it was the biggest loser ahead of its March 26 suspension for not meeting the public shareholding spread.
Among the banks, Public Bank shed 12 sen to RM18.48.
Power giant Tenaga Nasional lost 14 sen to RM14.46.
Among the key regional markets,
Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.91% to 19,737.93;
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.57% to 24,515.28;
Shanghai’s Composite Index rose 1.63% to 3,676.20;
Taiwan’s Taiex rose 0.12% to 9,761.39;
South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.05% to 2,038.30 and
Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.22% to 3,419.78
US light crude oil fell 55 cents to US$46.02 and Brent 46 cents to US$54.86.
Spot gold rose 59 cents to US$1,183.13.