Bursa Malaysia ends on firm note

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia ended on a firm note today, supported by buying in heavyweight stocks amid positive market sentiment following Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) move to cut the Overnight Policy Rate (OPR).

At 5pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) rose 11.31 points to 1,489.95 from Tuesday’s close of 1,478.64.

After opening 0.31 point easier at 1,478.33 this morning, the benchmark index moved between 1,474.95 and 1,491.07 throughout the day.

On the broader market, losers edged out gainers 464 to 431, with 338 counters unchanged, 765 untraded and 18 others suspended.

Turnover shrank to 2.99 billion shares worth RM2.37 billion from 3.08 billion shares worth RM2.49 billion on Tuesday.

A dealer said the local bourse opened easier but rebounded thereafter and remained steady throughout the trading day due to buying in heavyweight stocks, particularly the financial and telecommunication stocks.

Yesterday BNM announced a 25-basis point rate cut, the second for this year, to cushion the economy from any associated risk arising from the coronavirus outbreak, a move in line with dovish measures undertaken by several central banks across the globe.

This had contributed to the positive performance on the local bourse, the dealer noted.

“Local stocks reacted positively to BNM’s OPR cut announced yesterday amid lingering Covid-19 fears.

“The rate cut complements the RM20 billion stimulus package and should help address the downside risks to the economy from the Covid-19 impact,” he said.

He added that the performance was in line with the better performance of Asian stock markets. This was despite overnight losses on Wall Street after an emergency US interest cut aimed at defusing fears over the coronavirus outbreak failed to cheer the market.

Regionally, Japan’s Nikkei index edged up 0.08% to 21,100.06, Singapore’s Straits Times lndex gained 0.18% to 3,024.91, South Korea’s KOSPI Composite Index climbed 2.24% to 2,059.33, Shanghai’s Stock Exchange Index rose 0.63% to 3,011.67 while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index eased 0.24% to 26,222.07.

Among the heavyweights, Maybank gained six sen to RM8.47, Tenaga added eight sen to RM12.58, Public Bank rose 14 sen to RM17.90 and CIMB increased four sen to RM4.54. However, IHH was flat at RM5.60.

Of the actives, Tiger Synergy and Sapura Energy eased half-a-sen each to three sen and 16.5 sen respectively, Careplus added 3.5 sen to 31 sen, Xidelang gained one sen to 16.5 sen and Vortex was flat at eight sen.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index added 73.29 points to 10,504.53, the FBM Emas Shariah Index rose 80.01 points to 11,151.0, the FBMT 100 Index jumped 75.97 points to 10,328.98 and the FBM 70 gained 84.35 points to 12,815.66.

The FBM ACE slipped 3.78 points to 5,245.22.

Sector-wise, the Industrial Products and Services Index expanded 2.93 points to 135.27, the Financial Services Index surged 137.22 points to 14,450.54 and the Plantation Index improved 2.23 points to 6,752.28.

Main Market volume slipped to 1.70 billion shares worth RM2.14 billion from 2.0 billion shares worth RM2.24 billion on Tuesday.

Warrants turnover expanded to 382.36 million units valued at RM64.34 million compared with 365.49 million units worth RM64.87 million yesterday.

Volume on the ACE Market rose to 911.09 million shares worth RM173.08 million versus 712.21 million shares worth RM178.55 million on Tuesday.

Consumer products and services accounted for 339.23 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (190.97 million), construction (122.43 million), technology (174.93 million), SPAC (nil), financial services (65.95 million), property (239.63 million), plantations (46.61 million), REITs (14.05 million), closed/fund (41,000), energy (282.84 million), healthcare (83.35 million), telecommunications and media (27.05 million), transportation and logistics (30.83 million), and utilities (80.17 million). - Bernama