KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia extended its gains on Thursday as the FBM KLCI was lifted by Petronas-linked stocks, buoyed by firm crude oil prices, while plantations and glove makers rallied.
At 5pm, the KLCI was up 16.99 points or 1.18% to 1,452.11. Turnover was high at 7.15 billion shares valued at RM4.65bil. There were 558 gainers, 430 losers and 405 counters unchanged.
Bursa's firmer close bucked the key Asian markets. Reuters reported Japan's Nikkei stock index slid 0.2% after data there showed the country's exports collapsed 21.9% in April. Another dismal trade report came from South Korea where 20-day exports declined by 20.3% year-on-year and imports fell by 16.9%, though Korean stocks still ended the day higher.
Shares in China had ended down 0.2% after more sparring with Washington over the coronavirus and Hong Kong and Taiwan emerged. Friday's annual National People's Congress (NPC) meeting was also looming after a 2-1/2 month delay due to COVID-19.
At Bursa, glove makers were the among the top gainers with Kossan up 93 sen to RM8.63, Top Glove 86 sen to RM11.66, Supermax 81 sen to RM5.40, Hartalega 58 sen to RM10. Comfort Gloves jumped 28 sen to RM2.76 but Careplus shed 0.5 sen to 94.5 sen.
US light crude rose 1.9% to $34.09 a barrel and Brent jumped 1.8% to $36.39 per barrel. Both are now at the highest since early March on hopes that demand for fuel will see a robust global pick up.
Petronas Gas surged RM1.94 to RM17.12 and it was the top gainer for the day. Petronas Chemicals climbed 33 sen to RM6.17.
As for plantations, KL Kepong gained 58 sen to RM21.86 and Chin Tek 40 sen to RM5.90, IOI Corp rallied 22 sen to RM4.50, Sime Darby Plantation added six sen to RM4.98 but PPB Group lost 18 sen to RM16.74.
Tenaga lost 20 sen to RM12.24 but Sime Darby rose one sen to RM2.02.
Nestle was the top loser, down RM1.10 to RM137.50, Dutch Lady 56 sen to RM45.50 and F&N 54 sen to RM31.50.
RHB Bank added seven sen to RM4.82, Maybank and Public Bank gained two sen each to RM7.51 and RM15.48, CIMB eight sen to RM3.56 but Hong Leong Bank lost four sen to RM13.48.
As for telcos, Maxis was flat at RM5.30, Axiata lost nine sen to RM3.77 and Digi seven sen to RM4.40.
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