KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI continued to price in the breakdown in trade negotiations between the US and China and slumped noticeably after the passing of the 12 noon deadline for US trade tariffs.
At 12.30pm, the local index was down 5.03 points to 1,615.91. Trading volume was 1.44 billion shares valued at RM872.57mil. There were 384 decliners versus 282 gainers and 356 counters unchanged.
However, Chinese markets, which had been on a slide since the start of the week, rebounded in Friday's early session before the noon deadline for the tariff increase in US$200bil of Chinese goods.
Chinese vice premier Liu He remains in Washington for a second day of negotiations although Beijing has already issued a statement that it will retaliate for the tariff increase.
The Shanghai Composite Index was up 1.5%, the CSI300 Index gained 1.9% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index added 0.6%
Ex-China, most Asian markets slid further on the week. Japan's Nikkei Index slid 0.7% while both South Korea's Kospi and AUstralia's ASX200 were flat.
In Southeast Asia, Singapore's Straits Times Index was up 0.1% while Jakarta's Composite Index, Thailand's SET Index and the Philippines PSE Index were each down 0.2-0.3%.
On Bursa Malaysia, the top active counters were Bumi Armada
falling 1.5 sen to 19.5 sen, MQTech slipping 0.5 sen to 3.5 sen and Ekovest sliding 0.5 sen to 88 sen.
Top gainers by percentage value were consumer stocks including BAT jumping 64 sen to RM34.14, Dutch Lady
adding 22 sen to RM64 and Carlsberg climbing 20 sen to RM25.44
Leading losers included KLCI heavyweights Nestle dropping RM1.10 to RM143.90, Hong Leong Bank shedding 24 sen to RM19.38 and F&N sliding 20 sen to RM33.66.
Meanwhile, oil market investors remained hopeful of a trade resolution over the coming days, propping up prices of the commodity.
US crude gained 13 cents to US$61.83 a barrel and Brent crude rose seven cents to US$70.46 a barrel.
In currencies, the ringgit slid 0.1% against the US dollar as the investors sought out safe haven assets. The currency also fell 0.2% against the pound sterling to 5.4060 and 0.1% against the Singapore dollar to 3.0477.