KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia is expected to continue to trade on a cautious tone next week, due to bearish market outlook mainly from the external front, but the key index will likely stay above the psychological 1,500 level, dealers said.
Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd vice-president of equity research Thong Pak Leng said investor sentiment was expected to remain soft in the short term weighed by external factors such as increasing market risks and volatility in global markets amid the potential interest hike by the US Federal Reserve (Fed).
"Nonetheless, we expect bargain hunting to set in as the fundamentals of Malaysian companies are improving.
"Furthermore, we believe local equities are undervalued as compared to its regional peers, therefore offer good potential upsides for investors. As such, we expect the FBM KLCI to move within the 1,550-1,570 range next week,” he told Bernama.
On Friday, Thong said the FBM KLCI closed lower due to selling pressure across the region, losing 0.90 per cent or 14.18 points to end at 1,555.33.
"Key regional markets were lower following the broadly negative cues overnight from Wall Street, with energy and technology stocks primarily dragging markets down.
"Additionally, hawkish remarks from Fed officials made clear that U.S. interest rates could rise as soon as March, putting an end to ultra-easy monetary conditions,” he added.
On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the FBM KLCI rose 12.22 points to end the week at 1,555.33 from 1,543.11 last week.
On the index board, the FBM Emas Index was down 38.90 points to 11,178.52, the FBMT100 Index erased 17.99 points to 10,885.65, and the FBM Emas Shariah Index lost 178.67 points to 11,880.81.
The FBM 70 dropped 474.84 points to 13,852.57 and the FBM ACE shrank 412.40 points to 6,279.63.
Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index surged 444.66 points to 16,152.08, the Plantation Index climbed 42.72 points to 6,761.55, and the Energy Index garnered 15.24 points to 738.09.
The Industrial Products and Services Index added 0.69 of-a-point to 202.96, the Technology Index inched down 13.03 points to 83.14, and the Healthcare Index shed 57.66 points to 2,245.50.
Weekly turnover increased to 21.25 billion units worth RM12.22 billion compared with 17.76 billion units valued at RM9.18 billion in the previous week.
The Main Market volume expanded to 12.53 billion shares worth RM10.69 billion against 9.05 billion shares valued at RM7.58 billion in the previous week.
Warrants volume improved to 1.25 billion units worth RM160.36 million from 990.62 million units valued at RM123.12 million previously.
The ACE Market volume slipped to 7.43 billion shares worth RM1.35 billion versus 7.68 billion shares valued at RM1.46 billion in the previous week. - Bernama