Bursa rises as investors position for central bank meetings


KUALA LUMPUR: Investors are placing their bets on the latest guidance from global policymakers ahead of a host of central bank meetings scheduled for this week.

Bank Negara will chip in with its latest decision on Malaysia's lending policy this Thursday, which economists are expecting to retain the status quo.

Malaysia's benchmark FBM KLCI was seen rising 5.69 points to 1,543.71 at midday, in line with a broader increase in regional markets optimistic of declining interest rates.

The lower liners on Bursa Malaysia, however, weighed more heavily among the laggards as compared to the gainers, 464 to 398, while 431 counters were unchanged.

The trading volume was 2.06 billion shares changing hands for RM1.21bil.

CIMB led the blue chips higher with a 12 sen jump to RM6.46. Genting was also improved by five sen to RM4.72 while Genting Malaysia rose four sen to RM2.84.

Maybank climbed 10 sen to RM9.55, Kuala Lumpur Kepong added 26 sen to RM22.30 and YTL Corp gained seven sen to RM2.67.

On the retreat, Nestle Malaysia lost RM2.30 to RM121.10, Telekom shaved eight sen to RM5.91 and IHH shed 11 sen to RM6.03.

Of actives, TWL was up 0.5 sen to four sen, Harvest Miracle lost two sen to 13 sen and Hong Seng was flat at 1.5 sen.

Meanwhile, Japan's stock exchange made a bullish charge through the 40,000 barrier to a fresh historical record.

In China, high hopes for stimulus measures to be announced at the annual meeting of the National People's Congress today propped up equities prices. The Shanghai Composite index rose 0.2% to 3,033 while the CSI300 gained 0.l5% to 3,543.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng, however, slipped 0.1% lower to 16,578.

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