KLCI halves its losses, ends just above key 1,700

KUALA LUMPUR: Key Asian markets fell sharply on Thursday, after a tech sell-off battered Wall Street overnight while Bursa Malaysia was also not spared.

However, some buying support for selected hammered down stocks saw the FBM KLCI halving its losses for the early part of trade.

At 5pm, the KLCI was down 26.69 points or 1.54% to 1,708.49 . Its early low was 1,682.98 as heavy selling hit big cap stocks when markets opened after the overnight rout on Wall Street.Turnover rose to 3.10 billion shares valued at RM3.70bil. There were 232 gainers, 806 losers and 309 counters. 

The two-days losses had erased 66 points from the KLCI and sent the index to its lowest since July 12.

On the external front, emerging market stocks joined a slide in global equities on Thursday, falling to 17-months lows as worries about growth and the future of a long-running U.S. market rally undermined investors' appetite for risk, Reuters reported.

Equities in China, whose economic and trade prospects have been at the heart of worries this year over the outlook for global growth sank to near-four year lows.
MSCI's index of emerging market stocks fell about 3%, with the fall in Chinese stocks accompanied by sharp losses in Taiwan and South Korea.

At Bursa Malaysia, Maybank was the top mover among the KLCI stocks, erasing 4.52 points from the KLCI when it closed down 23 sen to RM9.28. CIMB fell 18 sen to RM5.66 and wiped out three points, Hong Leong Bank lost 26 sen to RM20.30, 

Public Bank 26 sen to RM24.90 and RHB Bank five sen to RM5.26.

Power giant Tenaga fell 40 sen to RM14.28 and wiped out 4.08 points, IHH 25 sen to RM5, Genting Malaysia 25 sen to RM4.41, Genting 16 sen to RM7.14 and MAHB 20 sen to RM8.35.

As oil and gas stocks, Petronas Chemical was down 14 sen to RM9.22 and Petronas Gas 54 sen to RM17.24 while Petronas Dagangan was 10 sen lower at RM26. Dialog was flat at RM3.31.

Among the telcos, Axiata rebounded 16 sen to RM4.01 and contributed 2.6 points to the KLCI, Telekom gained nine sen to RM2.64 but Maxis lost 12 sen to RM5.45 and Digi 18 sen lower at  RM4.39.

Sime Darby fell three sen to RM2.50, Sime Property four sen to RM1.07 while Sime Plantation was flat at RM5.24.

KL Kepong fell 26 sen to RM24.68, PPB Group 12 sen to RM16.76 and IOI Corp one sen to RM4.51.
Consumer stocks headed the losers list, with Nestle down RM1 to RM145, Heineken 94 sen to RM18.96, Carlsberg 64 sen to RM18.80 and Ajinomoro 54 sen to RM21.14 while BAT skidded 50 sen to RM34.50.

Gamuda rebounded 23 sen to RM2.30 with over 100 million shares done. StarBiz reported the Cabinet has set up a committee comprising four ministers to revisit the underground contract that was awarded to MMC-Gamuda for the Mass Rapid 

Transit 2 project.

Top Glove gained 20 sen to RM10.70 after its net profit rose 7.51% to RM101.59mil in the fourth quarter ended Aug 31. It declared a final dividend of 10 sen per share.
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