Bursa ends morning session lower in cautious trade

KUALA LUMPUR • Bursa Malaysia ended the morning trading session lower in cautious trade amid a regional downtrend after Wall Street tumbled overnight, a dealer said.

At 12.30pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) slipped 5.93 points, or 0.41%, to 1,441.25 from yesterday’s close of 1,447.18.

The benchmark index opened 2.31 points lower at 1,444.87, subsequently moving between 1,440.38 and 1,448.51 throughout the session. 

On the broader market, decliners outpaced gainers 455 to 280, while 340 counters were unchanged, 1,315 untraded, and nine others suspended.

Turnover stood at 1.20 billion units worth RM77.03 million. 

The local bourse extended yesterday’s loss to open lower today and stayed mostly in negative territory throughout the trading session.

“Sentiment remained cautious with the barometer index moving rangebound as investors digested the 75-basis point interest rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve (Fed), which is its third this year as well as the statement of more aggressive hikes to come,” the dealer said.

Asian equities were on the back foot today in reaction to the Fed’s decision.

“Post the Fed decision, there could be continued pressure on risk assets as monetary policy in the US and other parts of the globe tighten in reaction to price pressures and the normalisation of money supply (post-pandemic),” said ActivTrades trader Anderson Alves.

On the risk front, he said traders will also keep an eye on the Russia-Ukraine war as Russia’s President Vladimir Putin announced a partial military mobilisation to liberate the Donbas region. 

“Any escalation on the matter would increase the risk of more supply chain bottlenecks and sanctions against Russia.

“Due to Russia’s sensitivity to energy dependency, markets could sell off on any further aggression, with a potentially deep recession hitting emerging markets and developed markets, especially Europe,” he added.

Regionally, Japan’s Nikkei 225 declined 0.49% to 27,178.76, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 1.88% to 18,097.58, Singapore’s Straits Times Index was 0.41% easier at 3,248.46, South Korea’s Kospi slipped 1.1% to 2,321.44 and Shanghai’s SSE index slid 0.31% to 3,107.63.

Back home, Bursa heavyweights Malayan Banking Bhd added one sen to RM8.74, Public Bank Bhd added two sen to RM4.42, Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd trimmed five sen to RM8.56, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd shed four sen to RM5.41 and IHH Healthcare Bhd fell nine sen to RM6.01.

Of the actives, RGB International Bhd improved 1.5 sen to 14.5 sen, Cnergenz Bhd gained four sen to 99.5 sen, Top Glove Corp Bhd slid 1.5 sen to 63 sen, Vinvest Capital Holdings Bhd reduced two sen to 21 sen and Borneo Oil Bhd was flat 2.5 sen.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index went down 28.92 points to 10,301.17, the FBM T100 Index lost 30.18 points to 10,040.45, the FBM Emas Shariah Index slipped 41.15 points to 10,348.74 and the FBM ACE gave up 18.65 points to 4,759.47 but the FBM 70 edged up 6.74 points to 12,539.29.

Sector-wise, the Energy Index was 5.56 points easier at 720.02, the Plantation Index shed 9.83 points to 6,835.99, the Financial Services Index shrank 22.79 points to 16,377.06 and the Industrial Products and Services Index eased 0.94 of-a-point to 174.74. — Bernama / pic by TMR