Profit-taking takes over as investors cash in while awaiting new developments

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia succumbed to profit-taking on Friday following a stellar rally in the previous session underpinned by the announcement of Malaysia's 10th Prime Minister.

At 12.30pm, the benchmark FBM KLCI was down 16.75 points to 1,485.13. There were 553 decliners on the broader market, compared to 298 gainers.

Trading volume was 2.78 billion shares valued at RM1.39bil.

The negative retracement seen on the market can be attributed to the jubilant 58-point rally chalked up on the FBM KLCI in the previous session following the end of the political impasse.

However, some measure of uncertainty remains in the market as investors look ahead towards the appointment of the Cabinet as well as a scheduled vote of confidence to be held in Parliament on Dec 19.

Commenting on the road ahead, Hong Leong Investment Bank (HLIB) research said the working relationship between the member-coalitions of the unity government will be in focus, although noting there are advantages to the arrangement.

"The Centre for Market Education (CME) said that PH’s manifesto placed greater emphasis on social issues while BN focused more on the economy.

"We reckon that such differences, if managed properly, could result in 'synergies' being reaped from each other’s strengths," it said in a market strategy report.

A big push for Bursa Malaysia yesterday was the return of foreign investors after a six-day streak of net outflows.

However, blue chips were also the target of profit-taking with one of the previous day's biggest winners, banks and telcos, seeing selling pressure.

Maybank dropped seven sen to RM8.69 and CIMB fell eight sen to RM5.79 while Axiata slid nine sen to RM3.09, Maxis shed 16 sen to RM3.95 and Digi lost 10 sen to RM3.90.

Brewers, which also pushed higher in the lead-up and following the formation of the government, also lost steam with Heineken falling 22 sen to RM24.66 and Carlsberg losing 20 sne to RM22.54.

Still holding on to its perch as the top active traded stock on Bursa Malaysia, Advance Synergy fell two sen to 24 sen on 378.06 million shares traded.

Meanwhile MMAG was flat at three sen on the back of 353.05 million unit exchanging hands and ACE Market debutant Infomina rounded up the top three actives with a 16.5 sen surge to 56.5 sen on 147.79 million shares crossing hands.

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