Bursa trading volume hits all-time high

It appears that optimism in the regional markets helped to lift the sentiment on Bursa.

PETALING JAYA: It was a back-to-back record day for Bursa Malaysia after both trading volume and daily turnover of the stock exchange surged to all-time-high levels.

While the second trading of August had a shaky start in the morning session as losers outnumbered gainers initially across Bursa Malaysia, strong investor interest in mostly small and mid-cap stocks related to sectors like technology as well as industrial products and services fuelled the rally in the market.

With most key stock exchange indices charting strong gains, this optimism helped to lift the sentiment in the local equities market.

Signs of green shoots in the manufacturing activities of key global economies, including the United States, apart from the positive data from the US-based Semiconductor Industry Association, also offered fresh hope on the global economic outlook.

Bursa Malaysia’s trading volume touched 15.62 billion shares yesterday, marking the highest volume in local history. It was only a day earlier when Bursa Malaysia saw a record-high trading volume of 13.12 billion shares.

Meanwhile, the value traded also hit a new high at RM10.45bil. Over 44% of the turnover was contributed by the healthcare sector alone.

The market breadth yesterday was mixed as 608 gainers trumped 514 losers. A total of 376 counters were unchanged.

The stock exchange’s bellwether index, FBM KLCI, went through a yo-yo day of trading. By midday, blue chips extended their losses, dragged down by heavyweight glove maker Hartalega Holdings Bhd.

The index hit an intra-day low of 1,549.62 points but later rebounded to close in the positive territory. At 5pm, the index was up 3.33 points or 0.21% to 1,575.94.

A total of 16 constituents of the 30-stock index declined yesterday. While Hartalega was the worst performer on FBM KLCI as it declined by 2.73%, Top Glove Corp Bhd on the other hand was the best performer and rose by 5.51%.

A trader told StarBiz that retail investors remained the biggest catalyst for liquidity on the stock market.

“While there are concerns about corporate earnings since the results season is here, it looks like the retail investors continue to chase penny stocks and mid-cap stocks to benefit from the market rally.

“Globally, you can see key indices like Nasdaq and S&P500 on the rise and keep hitting new highs. Coupled with the gradual recovery in economic activities, these have further strengthened investor sentiment, ” he said.

On the external front, key regional stock market indices closed higher on improved investor sentiment.

In China, the Shanghai Composite Index inched up 0.1%. The rise seems to be on the back of strong gains in banks as investors cheered Beijing’s latest move to ease pressure on the country’s financial institutions.

Meanwhile, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average gained 1.7% to reach its highest close since July 28.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was up 2% as stocks snapped a three-session losing streak and ended higher, led by strong gains in technology firms.

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