Investor caution on Bursa caps rebound momentum

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia started out on a flat note on Wednesday as it struggled to maintain the rebound it had started in the previous session.

Expectations are for a continued positive retracement on the local market following the strong performance in overseas markets overnight, when US and European equities rallied on the back of easing fears over the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.

"We reckon the overnight rally on Wall Street may spill over to the local bourse amid fading concerns over the Covid-19 Omicron variant.

"Besides, the market may keep an eye on China's economic data (inflation and PPI) which will be released on Thursday," said Malacca Securities Research in a report.

However, the research firm noted that the technical indicators remain mixed with the MACD Histogram extending a negative bar and the relative strength index rising above the oversold level.

It pegs support at 1,480 and resistance at 1,500-1,520.

At 9.05am, the FBM KLCI was little changed after rising just 0.28 of-a-point to 1,498.25, suggesting investors' ongoing caution and reluctance to move past the 1,500 psychological resistance.

The benchmark index had rallied 14.52 points or 1% in the previous session to hover just below the crucial resistance in a relief rally after days of sustained selling.

Banking stocks climbed as the window-dressing period had begun on Bursa Malaysia, lending a much-needed push to the index.

In early Wednesday trading, however, the banking heavyweights were seen struggling with Maybank slipping one sen to RM8.09, CIMB falling two sen to RM5.28 and Hong Leong Bank dipping four sen to RM17.94.

There was also selling in telcos led by Axiata down six sen to RM3.73 and Digi dropping three sen to RM4.01.

However, a rebound in crude oil prices above US$75 a barrel lent support to energy counters, notably Petronas Chemicals, which climbed six sen to RM8.50.

The higher crude palm oil prices also shored up plantation prices, as seen in Sime Darby Plantation gaining four sen to RM3.79.

On the broader market, there were 246 gainers to 86 decliners, suggesting a positive market breadth.

Top actives were Sapura Energy down 0.5 sen to 4.5 sen, MMAG unchanged at nine sen and DNeX up 1.5 sen to 78 sen.
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Bursa Malaysia , FBM KLCI , equities


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