Oil prices extended their rally with international benchmark Brent rising seven cents to US$32.91 a barrel and US crude climbing 68 cents to US$35.76.
Investors stayed bullish on oil and gas counters, which continued to drive trading volumes on Bursa Malaysia. Some 2.57 billion shares exchanged hands on the market for a value of RM1.02bil.
Stocks seeing heavy trading interest included Hibiscus Petroleum up two sen to 52.5 sen, SAPURA ENERGY gaining 0.5 sen to 11 sen and Bumi Armada rising one sen to 18.5 sen.
Among the Petronas counters, Petronas Chemicals was up three sen to RM4.81 and Petronas Dagangan rose two sen to RM21.08. Petronas Gas fell two sen to RM15.38.
Outside of the O&G sector, stocks seeing strong buying interest included Avillion gaining two sen to 7.5 sen and VC adding two sen to nine sen.
At 12.30pm, the FBM KLCI was up 7.02 points to 1,368.41. The financial sector climbed on an overall more optimistic outlook as data from the US and Europe suggested that the coronavirus pandemic had peaked.
Maybank was up three sen to RM7.90, Public Bank gained six sen to RM15.88, CIMB added three sen to RM3.55, Hong Leong Bank put on four sen to RM13.36 and RHB rose three sen to RM4.69.
Other notable gainers were Axiata up seven sen to RM3.62 and glove maker Hartalega, which jumped 23 sen to RM7.50.
On the forex market, the ringgit also rose against global currencies as investors' risk appetite improved. The local currency gained 0.2% against the US dolalr at 4.3370, 0.2% against the pound sterling at 5.3727 and 0.1% against the Singapore dollar at 3.0431.
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