KLCI stays muted as market breadth negative in line with regional fall

KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 26): The main index of Bursa Malaysia remained muted in the mid-morning, while market breadth turned negative in line with lower regional markets.

At 10am, the FBM KLCI was up 0.30 points at 1,581.84. The index earlier slipped to a low of 1,578.92.

Market breadth was negative with 711 losers and 271 gainers, while 349 counters traded unchanged. Trading volume was 2.66 billion shares valued at RM1.43 billion.

The gainers included D&O Green Technologies Bhd, Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd (HLFG), UEM Edgenta Bhd, Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd, Industronics Bhd and MSM Malaysia Holdings Bhd.

The actively traded stocks included XOX Bhd, Puncak Niaga Holdings Bhd, ManagePay Systems Bhd, Industonics, Lion Industries Corp Bhd and MSM Malaysia.

The losers included Heineken Malaysia Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd, Ajinomoto (Malaysia) Bhd, KESM Industries Bhd and UWC Bhd.

Reuters said Asian stocks opened sharply lower today after Wall Street’s main indices tumbled, with technology-related stocks under pressure following a steep rise in benchmark US Treasury yields.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 2% in early trade, on track for the biggest intraday percentage loss since Jan 28. Japan’s Nikkei 225 was down 1.8%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index futures lost 1.69%, it said.

Inter-Pacific Research Sdn Bhd said Malaysian equities staged a firm comeback yesterday, in tandem with the positive trend among its regional peers to regain the 1,580 psychological level with banking stocks leading the recovery.

In its daily bulletin today, the research house said this came about following the release of some above-expectation corporate results and the US Federal Reserve’s (Fed) reiteration of easy monetary policies.

It said at the same time, foreign funds turned net buyers for the day, breaking a seven-session selling streak, but overall volumes were lower.

“With the technical indicators mildly oversold, yesterday’s bounce was welcomed as it allowed the key index to end its downward streak.

“However, it remains to be seen if there is sufficient follow-through support to extend the recovery,” it said.

The research house said as it is, the buying interest is still relatively mild and there is still some measure of cautiousness that may hamper recovery prospects.

In addition, it said the weakness in key global indices overnight could also dampen the recovery process and prompt quick profit-taking actions on some of yesterday’s big movers on Bursa.

“Therefore, we see market conditions becoming mixed to lower again, but we think any downside could be supported at the 1,565-1,570 levels.

“The hurdles, meanwhile, are at 1,590 and 1,600 points respectively,” it said.

Source: TheEdgeMarkets