KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia recouped some of its earlier losses to settle 1.06 per cent lower today as investors remained uncertain over the local political developments amid lingering Covid-19 fears.
Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd senior analyst Kenneth Leong however said the decline was capped by gradual bargain hunting in several heavyweights such as Tenaga and PPB.
At 5pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) lost 15.70 points to 1,466.94, after opening 11.30 points easier at 1,471.34.
The index moved between 1,456.08 and 1,478.68 throughout the day.
“The local political situation did have a minor impact on the FBM KLCI’s performance today, but market players are more concerned about the escalating Covid-19 virus that spreads faster outside of China,“ he told Bernama.
On the broader market, losers trounced gainers 651 to 341, with 346 counters unchanged, 660 untraded and 18 suspended.
Turnover fell to 4.33 billion shares worth RM3.28 billion from 5.08 billion shares worth RM4.74 billion last Friday.
However, Leong expected Khazanah Nasional Bhd’s encouraging performance for 2019 would lend support to the key index as soon as tomorrow.
“That would be one of the positive news that could improve the market sentiment, probably we could see the impact starting from tomorrow, or one or two days from now,“ he said.
Khazanah, in the first full year of its refreshed mandate, reported a turnaround in overall performance for 2019 with record profits from operations, contributed by higher divestment gains and lower impairments, and robust portfolio returns.
It achieved profit from operations of RM7.36 billion last year, compared with a loss from operations of RM6.27 billion in 2018.
Moving forward, Leong expected bargain hunting to emerge and lift the FMB KLCI higher in the next few days following a sharp decline dragged by local political turmoil last week.
“The market benchmark is also likely to track its regional peers, which had recovered today from last week’s losses,“ he added.
Regionally, Singapore’s Straits Times lndex gained 0.11 per cent to 3,007.72, Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.95 per cent to 21,344.08, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was 0.62 per cent better at 26,291.68.
Among heavyweights, Tenaga rose 40 sen to RM12.50, PPB bagged 18 sen to RM18.28, while Maybank fell three sen to RM8.39, and Public Bank and IHH lost two sen each to RM17.08 and RM5.68.
Of the actives, Sapura Energy slipped 2.5 sen to 16 sen, XOX trimmed one sen to 3.5 sen, while Eden, a stock linked to newly-minted Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin Muhyiddin’s son Datuk Fakhri Yassin Mahiaddin, rose 7.5 sen to 27 sen, MyEG added eight sen to RM1.20 and Netx was unchanged at two sen.
Muhyiddin, 72, started work as the eighth Prime Minister today after he took his oath of office before the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah at the Istana Negara on Sunday.
Al-Sultan Abdullah appointed Muhyiddin as the new prime minister in accordance with Articles 40 (2) (a) and 43 (2) (a) of the Federal Constitution, replacing Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who resigned as the seventh Prime Minister on February 24.
On the index board, the FBM Emas Index declined 124.15 points to 10,354.61, the FBM Emas Shariah Index erased 102.45 points to 11,018.70 while the FBMT 100 Index gave up 126.33 points to 10,174.47.
The FBM 70 dipped 229.37 points to 12,644.55 but the FBM Ace added 20.15 points to 5,258.44.
Sector-wise, the Industrial Products and Services Index inched down 1.87 points to 130.93, the Financial Services Index fell 181.93 points to 14,148.72 and the Plantation Index was 90.26 points easier at 6,719.48.
Main Market volume retreated to 3.05 billion shares worth RM3.04 billion from 3.35 billion shares worth RM4.39 billion last Friday.
Warrants turnover dwindled to 390.36 million units valued at RM60.62 million from 567.34 million units worth RM96.29 million.
Volume on the ACE Market slipped to 887.59 million shares worth RM177.06 million compared with 1.16 billion units worth RM251.82 million previously.
Consumer products and services accounted for 655.81 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (311.53 million), construction (179.54 million), technology (411.99 million), SPAC (nil), financial services (93.88 million), property (299.90 million), plantations (48.48 million), REITs (11.14 million), closed/fund (4,100), energy (608.67 million), healthcare (37.96 million), telecommunications and media (53.57 million), transportation and logistics (56.51 million), and utilities (287.70 million). - Bernama