Bursa Malaysia ends first half of 2017 on weak note

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia ended the first half of the year easier today weighed down by unfavourable regional sentiment that curbed interests for equities despite the better oil prices.

The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) finished 7.69 points lower at 1,763.67 from Thursday's close of 1,771.36 on the back of selling in major blue-chips led by IHH Healthcare.

After opening 2.27 points weaker at 1,770.32 earlier today, the key index moved between 1,755.65 and 1,772.59 throughout the day.

IHH Healthcare, which planned to open a US$200 million (US$1 = RM4.29) hospital in Shanghai, fell 18 sen to RM5.75 with 6.48 million shares traded. The stock accounted for -2.529 points to the key index.

On the scoreboard, losers hammered gainers by 507 to 336, with 406 counters unchanged, 557 untraded and 53 others suspended.

Volume improved to 1.51 billion units worth RM2.31 billion from 1.39 billion units worth RM1.56 on Thursday.

Etiqa Insurance & Takaful's Head of Research, Investment Management Division, Chris Eng, said Bursa Malaysia's downtrend was in tandem with the sell-down seen in the regional peers.

However, late window-dressing managed to help FBM KLCI recover half of its earlier losses, he said.

"Support level has been broken. Even with the window-dressing, it is still not enough to push the key index up," he told Bernama.

The FBM KLCI finished the first trading day of the year easier at 1,635.53.

The local bourse was mostly in red today as investors took the cue from the poor overnight Wall Street's performance.

Japan's Nikkei 225 Index fell by 0.92% to 20,033.43, Hong Kong's Hang Seng eased by 0.77% to 25,764.58 and Singapore's Straits Times Index declined by 0.99% to 3,226.48.

Among heavyweights, Sime Darby lost seven sen to RM9.50, CIMB declined six sen to RM6.58, and Petronas Chemicals eased two sen to RM7.10.

Public Bank rose two sen to RM20.32. Maybank and Tenaga were flat at RM9.63 and RM14.14 respectively.

Of the actives, Hiap Teck gained two sen to RM38.5 sen, while both Talam and Vsolar added one sen each to five sen and 10.5 sen respectively.

Nestle (M) topped the gainers' list, rising RM1.52 to RM85.00, while Teck Guan Perdana led the losers' chart, giving up 22 sen to RM1.84.

The FBM Emas Index fell 32.97 points to 12,598.94, FBM Ace eased 36.65 points to 6,493.7, FBMT 100 Index declined 32.99 points to 12,234.89 and the FBM Emas Shariah Index was 27.84 points lower to 12,822.15.

FBM 70, however, rose 35.6 points to 15,073.83.

On a sectoral basis, the Plantation Index fell 20.02 points to 7,913.2 and the Finance Index gave up 34.07 points for 16,766.18. The Industrial Index added 0.33 of-a-point to 3,270.56.

The Main Market turnover surged to 1.13 billion units worth RM2.24 billion from 910.03 million units worth RM1.45 billion on Thursday.

Warrants increased marginally to 111.09 million units valued at RM16.07 million from 110.77 million units valued at RM12.21 million previously.

Volume on the ACE Market declined to 256.58 million shares worth RM59.38 million from 370.92 million shares worth RM88.36 yesterday.

Consumer products accounted for 55.48 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products (393.31 million), construction (86.45 million), trade and services (315.54 million), technology (38.21 million), infrastructure (12.82 million), SPAC (2.03 million), finance (72.93 million), hotels (407,500), properties (127.79 million), plantations (19.34 million), mining (3,200), REITs (7.62 million) and closed/fund (7,000).

The physical price of gold as at 5pm stood at RM166.36 per gramme, down 13 sen from RM166.49 at 5pm yesterday. — Bernama