Equities trend lower on trade war chatter

  • Markets
  • Wednesday, 20 Nov 2019

KUALA LUMPUR: Conflicting messages over the US-China trade war put global equities on the back foot on Wednesday as the recent bout of investor optimism began to wane.

Over the morning session, the local stock exchange gravitated lower, returning to a 1,600 safety following recent gains.

At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI was down 5.96 points to 1,599.35. Trading volume was 1.55 billion shares valued at RM838.32mil. There were 364 decliners compared to 319 gainers and 359 counters unchanged.

Petronas Chemicals led the decline with an 11 sen drop to RM7.25 while Tenaga Nasional shaved 12 sen to RM13.64.

Amid the broad-based pullback on the 30-stock KLCI, Petronas Gas fell 30 sen to RM16.40, IHH slid four sen to RM5.41 and Axiata lost four sen to RM4.32.

There were few gainers on the index including KL Kepong up 60 sen to RM23.10, MISC gaining four sen to RM8.34 and IOI advancing two sen to RM4.45.

Top actively traded counters on the stock exchange were Alam Maritim up 2.5 sen to 12.5 sen, Bumi Armada gaining one sen to 54 sen and Fintec climbing 1.5 sen to 9.5 sen.

Meanwhile, oil prices were en route to further losses as data from the American Petroleum Institure showed a far larger rise in crude stocks than expectec.

US crude dropped two cents to US$55.19 a barrel while Brent crude fell nine cents to US$60.82 a barrel.

In currencies, the ringgit was mostly flat against a basket of currencies. It was unchanged against the US dollar at 4.1570, the pound sterling at 5.3670 and Singapore dollar at 3.0535.
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