KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia was en route to a third straight day of losses as monetary stimulus measures by major central banks failed to lift investor sentiment amid global growth concerns.
The FBM KLCI bucked the regional trend by moving 5.16 points lower to 1,591.12 despite mild gains in benchmark Asian markets.
Trading volume on the local stock exchange was 1.33 billion shares valued at RM893.41mil. Market breadth was negative with 383 decliners versus 237 gainers and 395 counters unchanged.
A leading loser on the domestic market was KL Kepong, which had been experiencing selling pressure since it was revealed that there was a fire at an oil palm estate managed by its subsidiary in Riau, Indonesia, and that the area had been sealed by the authorities.
At the close of the morning session, the plantation play had lost 64 sen to RM22.76.
Meanwhile, telcos were also on the backfoot led by Digi slipping eight sen to RM4.68. Axiata was also down three sen to RM4.27 while Maxis dropped seven sen to RM5.63.
Top active traded counters on the stock exchange were Bumi Armada up 0.5 sen to 35 sen, Vsolar up 0.5 sen to nine sen and Priceworth up 0.5 sen to five sen.
Oil prices meanwhile were on the rise on Saudi Arabian military operations in Yemen in response to the attack on its oil facilities over the weekend.
US crude rose 49 cents to US$58.26 a barrel and Brent crude grew 29 cents to US$64.69 a barrel.
The price increase in the commodity helped to lift the ringgit against the greenback. It was 0.25% stronger over the US dollar at 4.1790 but was unchanged against the pound sterling at 5.3455 and Singapore dollar at 3.0373.