KUALA LUMPUR: Blue chips inched higher early Monday, with plantations among the top gainers on rising crude palm oil prices.
At 9.36am, the FBM KLCI was up 2.51 points or 0.15% to 1,644.32. tracking the early gains of the key Asian markets as crude oil prices advanced.
Turnover was 731.47 million shares valued at RM274.69mil. There were 303 gainers, 192 losers and 263 counters unchanged.
Asian shares edged higher as investors cheered a much-needed rebound in US payrolls, while looking forward to more policy stimulus in China, Reuters reported.
Beijing said it would step up its policy of targeted cuts to banks' required reserve ratios to encourage financing for small and medium-sized businesses.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 0.1% to hold just below its recent seven-month top. Japan's Nikkei rose 0.2% to its highest of the year so far, while South Korea and Australia both made modest gains. E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 inched up 0.03%.
At Bursa, plantations were among the top gainers, KL Kepong gained 34 sen to RM25.10, PPB Group and Riverview 20 sen higher to RM18.70 and RM2.95. However, United Malacca fell 10 sen to RM5.30.
Nestle was the top gainer, up RM1 to RM146.50, BAT 28 sen to RM36.28 while Carlsberg added 12 sen to RM26.18.
Oil prices held firm on expectations that an escalating conflict in Libya could tighten oil supplies. US crude was last up 34 cents at US$63.42 a barrel, while Brent crude futures rose 31 cents to US$70.65.
Hengyuan added 17 sen to RM6.18. Sapura Energy
and its warrants rose one sen each to 36.5 sen and 15 sen in very active trade.
lost five sen to 14 sen, Trans Ocean 4.5 sen to 60.5 sen and LTKM four sen to RM1.14.
Kesm fell five sen to RM7.95 but Pentamaster advanced nine sen to RM3.96.