KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI slid closer to the psychologically important 1,600 level in Monday morning trade as the setback in US-China trade negotiations continued to weigh on investor sentiment.
At 12.30pm, the index was down 5.8 points to 1,604.47. Trading volume was 1.14 billion shares valued at RM566.73mil. There were 645 decliners versus 116 gainers and 243 counters unchanged.
The most heavily traded counters were Armada down one sen to 19 sen, Lambo dropping one sen to seven sen and Tiger unchanged at four sen.
Top gainers on the stock exchange were Nestle rising 30 sen to RM144.30, Petronas Dangangan gaining 16 sen to RM24.40 and BAT adding 12 sen to RM34.10.
Declining stocks included F&N falling 64 sen to RM32.74, United Plantation dropping 42 sen to RM26.30 and Allianz slipping 38 sen to RM13.22.
Asian markets were a sea of red on Monday despite the rebound in Chinese markets on Friday as Beijing promised more stimulus measures to offset the trade turmoil.
The Shanghai Composite Index fell 1% while the CSI300 Index dropped 1.3%. Hong Kong's stock exchange was closed for a national holiday.
In Southeast Asia, the downtrend accelerated with Singapore's Straits Times Index shedding 1.2%, Thailand's SET Index falling 0.1%, Jakarta's Composite Index sliding 0.3% and the Philippines' PSE Index sliding 0.2%.
Oil prices were mixed with as investors worried over the impact of the escalating trade war on demand.
US crude slipped five cent sto US$61.61 a barrel and Brent crude gained 19 cents to US$70.81 a barrel.
The ringgit was 0.1% lower against the greenback to 4.1610 amid a flight from riskier assets. It also slipped 0.1% against the pound sterling to 5.4127 and gained 0.15% against the Singapore dollar to 3.0464.