Bursa Malaysia ends marginally higher on late buying

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia closed higher on Tuesday, buoyed by late buying in blue-chip stocks led by Maybank, MISC, and Petronas Chemicals, amid the mostly weaker performance in regional peers.

At 5 pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) inched up by 0.88 of-a-point to 1,538.42 from Monday’s close of 1,537.54.

The benchmark index opened 1.48 points lower at 1,536.06 and moved in a tight range between 1,532.07 and 1,540.51 throughout the day.

On the broader market, gainers beat losers 570 to 472, while 491 counters were unchanged, 807 untraded, and 47 others suspended.

Turnover increased to 3.83 billion units worth RM3.04 billion from 3.59 billion units worth RM2.49 billion on Monday.

Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd chief economist Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid said that the prevailing general sentiment in the stock market is still cautious.

"Investors are awaiting key statistical updates in the United States (US), particularly the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) inflation data which is projected to hold steady at 2.4 per cent for February.

"Essentially, this inflation figure will influence the US Federal Reserve's decision on the timing of any potential interest rate adjustments, which has been a significant factor driving positive investor sentiment,” he told Bernama.

Additionally, he said that Malaysia's inflation rate for February, at 1.8 per cent year-on-year, exceeded the consensus estimate of 1.4 per cent, and may indicate a heightened sense of caution among investors and consumers relating to their future spending intentions.

Among the heavyweights, Maybank added 7.0 sen to RM9.69, Petronas Chemicals improved by 5.0 sen to RM6.83, Public Bank advanced 1.0 sen RM4.25, while CIMB Group was flat at RM6.50 and Tenaga Nasional eased 2.0 sen to RM11.48.

As for the actives, Sapura Energy added 1.0 sen to 5.0 sen, TCS Group added 6.5 sen to 19.5 sen, while TWL Holdings, Fitters Diversified and Lambo Group were flat all at 3.0 sen, 5.5 sen and 3.0 sen respectively, and Wentel slipped 2.0 sen to 33 sen.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index rose 20.60 points to 11,561.60, the FBMT 100 Index increased by 17.67 points to 11,206.32, the FBM Emas Shariah Index gained 34.53 points to 11,665.77, the FBM 70 Index surged 71.68 points to 16,101.56, and the FBM ACE Index was 29.15 points higher at 4,910.02.

Sector-wise, the Plantation Index climbed 28.08 points to 7,344.52, the Industrial Products and Services Index perked up 0.90 of-a-point to 179.52, and the Financial Services Index garnered 41.10 points to 17,220.04.

Meanwhile, the Energy Index decreased by 1.12 points to 938.25.

The Main Market volume improved to 2.39 billion units valued at RM2.69 billion from 2.36 billion units valued at RM2.26 billion on Monday.

Warrants turnover swelled to 717.87 million units worth RM112.12 million from 585.33 million units worth RM82.39 million yesterday.

The ACE Market volume declined to 706.18 million shares worth RM226.65 million from 777.06 million shares worth RM207.82 million previously.

Consumer products and services counters accounted for 303.53 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (503.76 million); construction (232.46 million); technology (176.33 million); SPAC (nil); financial services (103.09 million); property (511.87 million); plantation (93.65 million); REITs (16.04 million), closed/fund (31,200); energy (239.59 million); healthcare (66.14 million); telecommunications and media (34.82 million); transportation and logistics (40.39 million); and utilities (66.55 million). - Bernama

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