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Bursa Malaysia ends lower on Covid-19 worries, release of GDP

12 May 2020 / 17:58 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia ended lower Tuesday amidst renewed Covid-19 concerns globally and ahead of the release of Malaysia’s first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) numbers tomorrow.

At the close, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) went down 2.38 points to 1,379.93 compared to Friday’s close of 1,382.31.

The index, which opened 2.87 points lower at 1,379.44, moved between 1,377.56 and 1,388.41 throughout the day.

On the broader market, losers led gainers by 456 to 437, while 368 counters were unchanged, 604 untraded and 17 others suspended.

Total turnover rose to 6.39 billion units worth RM3.73 billion from Friday’s 4.68 billion units worth RM2.73 billion.

AxiCorp chief global market strategist Stephen Innes said worries over Covid-19 spread with rising new cases in South Korea and Wuhan kept investors cautious.

Wuhan has been ordered to test the city’s entire population of over 11 million people over the next ten days after six new cases were found.

Innes said besides the GDP announcement, local investors were also keeping tabs on China Retail sales slated for release this Friday.

“The Chinese data provide a strong indication of what consumer demand might be like around the globe once lockdowns are lifted,“ he told Bernama.

Bank Negara Malaysia is expected to announce Malaysia’s first-quarter GDP on May 13, with growth projected to be between 0.8% and more than 4.0%.

In addition, he said oil prices had been trading sideways all day with few catalysts to move on, adding that Asia markets are seemingly taking a wait-and-see attitude ahead of the release of the American Petroleum Institute inventory survey, which should provide a sentiment nudge.

“Indeed, printing a fourth consecutive week of inventory contractions would be viewed in a positive light,“ he said.

Among heavyweights, Public Bank slid 22 sen to RM15.52, Petronas Chemicals was eight sen lower at RM5.40 and Petronas Dagangan slipped 56 sen to RM19.94.

However, glove makers continued to get a boost from Covid-19 worries, with Top Glove adding 68 sen to RM7.99 and Hartalega went up 16 s.en to RM7.53.

As for the actives, Careplus increased 30 sen to 89 sen, HLT Global added eight sen to 38 sen, while LKL, a manufacturer specialising in healthcare beds and medical equipment, jumped 18 sen to 56 sen.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index declined 7.88 points to 9,728.03, the FBMT 100 Index lost 14.44 points to 9,572.07, the FBM Emas Shariah Index added 41.65 points to 10,888.10, the FBM ACE climbed 123.78 points to 5,144.79 and the FBM 70 gained 36.41 points to 11,882.86.

Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index fell 71.77 points to 12,213.50, the Industrial Products and Services Index inched down 0.90 of-a-point to 120.55, while the Plantation Index dipped 23.09 points to 6,216.58.

Main Market volume rose to 3.58 billion shares worth RM2.83 billion from 2.96 billion shares worth RM2.30 billion last Friday.

Warrants turnover increased to 333.64 million units valued at RM64.36 million from 298.71 million valued at RM55.57 million previously.

Volume on the ACE Market swelled to 2.48 billion shares worth RM834.31 million from 1.42 billion shares worth RM382.44 million.

Consumer products and services accounted for 659.94 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (706.67 million), construction (373.47 million), technology (510.03 million), SPAC (nil), financial services (49.90 million), property (194.65 million), plantations (91.57 million), REITs (7.80 million), closed/fund (106,000), energy (417.49 million), healthcare (161.83 million), telecommunications and media (198.92 million), transportation and logistics (174.95 million), and utilities (31.28 million).

The market was closed on Monday in lieu of the Nuzul Al-Quran holiday which fell on Sunday. - Bernama

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