Malaysian Stock Market Extends Gains, FBM KLCI Rallies To Near Three-Week High

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KUALA LUMPUR, July 12 (Bernama) -- Bursa Malaysia extended gains for a fourth consecutive day with the benchmark index closing at a near three-week high Thursday, bolstered by positive regional sentiment and strong gains in index-linked counters led by Maybank.

At 5 pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) was 14.8 points higher to close at 1,703.57 from Wednesday’s close of 1,688.77, after moving between 1,686.14 and 1,704.34 throughout the day.

Gains in Maybank lifted the composite index sharply by 7.015 points. The banking stock climbed 36 sen to end the day at RM9.50 with 10.61 million shares changing hands.

The overall market breadth was bullish with gainers thumping losers 598 to 294, with 364 counters unchanged, 614 untraded and 19 others suspended.

Volume increased to 2.69 billion units valued at RM2.51 billion, from 2.08 billion units valued at RM2.03 billion recorded yesterday.

Hermana Capital Bhd Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer Dr Nazri Khan Adam Khan said Asian equities strongly rebounded from earlier losses, showing some stabilisation as fears over trade war between the United States and China had subsided.

“The worry is over. It’s a sign of bottoming,” he told Bernama.

He said there were growing optimism in the global market, with the hope that the world’s two largest economies would discuss to cool off the trade war and tariff retaliations.

Most of Asian bourses, including Bursa Malaysia, started the day weaker but rebounded thereafter following a positive recovery in Chinese indexes amid improved crude oil prices, which is an advantage to Malaysia.

China's SSE Composite Index surged 2.16 per cent to 2,837.66, Japan's Nikkei 225 jumped 1.17 per cent to 22,187.96, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.60 per cent to 28,480.83 and Singapore's Straits Times added 0.12 per cent to 3,253.01.

Nazri Khan said gains in banking stocks, following Bank Negara Malaysia’s decision to keep the overnight policy rate unchanged at 3.25 per cent, also partly contributed to the better performance today.

Among banking stocks, CIMB rose 25 sen to RM5.63, Public Bank and Hong Leong Financial Group soared 20 sen each to RM23.00 and RM18.04 respectively, RHB Bank increased six sen to RM5.30, and Hong Leong Bank gained four sen to RM18.46.

Of the heavyweights, IHH Healthcare perked seven sen to RM5.97, but Tenaga eased two sen to RM14.48, Petronas Chemicals slipped one sen to RM8.53, and Maxis shed three sen to RM5.37.

Among actives, MRCB improved 16 sen to 74 sen, George Kent bagged 30 sen to RM1.29, MyEG earned 6.5 sen to 86 sen, but Sapura Energy shed half-a-sen to 59 sen.

Malaysian Pacific Industries was the biggest gainer today, bagging 54 sen to RM10.70, while BAT topped the losers list falling RM1.00 to RM32.40.