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KLCI, key Asian markets end in the red but Rhone Ma shines

by December 19, 2016 General

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s stock market and key Asians bourses closed lower on Monday as most of their currencies weakened after the US Federal Reserve had signalled a faster-than-expected pace of interest rate rises in 2017.   

At 5pm, the KLCI was down 3.49 points or 0.21% to 1,634.30. Turnover was 1.33 billion shares valued at RM1.35bil. There were 307 gainers, 401 losers and 354 counters unchanged.

Amid the cautious broader market, Rhone Ma closed higher in active trade when it made its debut on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia.

The ringgit slipped against the US dollar to the 1998 levels at 4.4785 from 4.4780. It also fell against the pound sterling to 5.5943 from 5.5671 and retreated against the Euro to 4.6878 from 4.6720. However, it rose against the Singapore dollar at 3.0982 from 3.1034.

Second Finance Minister Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani said the ringgit, which has weakened along with other emerging market currencies against the US dollar, has all the strength to bounce back.

“We should not panic,” he said. “We have the ecosystem to make it right, ensure political stability is intact and (continuously) apply the right policies to facilitate investors,” he said when asked on the ringgit’s decline to 4.4805 per US dollar earlier on Monday.

At Bursa Malaysia, Rhone Ma closed at 87 sen, which was a premium of 12 sen or 16% above its offer price of 75 sen. The end-to-end animal health solution provider saw 40.14 million shares done.

Weighing on the KLCI were Axiata Group, Tenaga Nasional and Public Bank. 

Axiata fell 14 sen to RM4.54 on profit taking and erased 2.06 points from the KLCI. Maxis lost five sen to RM5.95, Digi rose two sen to RM4.98 while Telekom Malaysia was unchanged at RM5.95.

Tenaga Nasional lost six sen to RM13.70 and wiped out 0.55 of a point from the index, MISC fell four sen to RM7.32 but Genting Bhd added three sen to RM7.97 while Genting Malaysia was flat at RM4.70.

Crude palm oil fell RM13 to RM3,148 per tonne afte scaling to a high of RM3,201 at midday.  Kuala Lumpur Kepong fell 14 sen to RM23.72, IOI Corp lost five sen sen to RM4.38, PPB Group added 10 sen to RM15.76. Sime Darby rose six sen to RM8.15 and Batu Kawan added 40 sen to RM18.10.

Oil prices rose on Monday as a weaker dollar and the delay of new Libyan oil exports boosted benchmarks, amid expectations of tighter crude supply going into 2017, Reuters reported.

US light crude oil rose 32 cents to US$52.22 and Brent gained 33 cents to US$55.54.  

Petronas Dagangan fell 20 sen to RM23.50, Petronas Gas was flat at RM21.16 while Petronas Chemicals gained three sen to RM6.88. 

Prolexus fell 12 sen to RM1.38 in active trade while its warrants fell 9.5 sen to 52.5 sen.

Dutch Lady was the top loser, down 98 sen to RM55.02 but BAT added 34 sen to RM43.60 and Apollo gained 16 sen to RM5.70.

Among the key regional markets,

Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.05% to 19,391.60;

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.85% to 21,832.68;

CSI 300 lost 0.51% to 3,328.98;

Shanghai’s Composite Index fell 0.16% to 3,118.08;

Hang Seng China Enterprise was down 0.98% to 9,377.43;

Taiwan’s Taiex lost 0.94% to 9,239.32;

South Korea’s Kospi was down 0.19% to 2,038.39; and

Singapore’s Straits Times Index was down 0.84% to 2,913.08.

Spot gold rose US$3.99 to US$1,138.86.