South-east Asia stocks mostly subdued, Philippines gains
SINGAPORE, Jan 17 — Most South-east Asian stock markets were muted today in line with broader Asia as Wall Street took a breather after its record-setting run, dampening momentum in global equities.
Broader Asian stocks came off an all-time high as weaker oil and commodity prices hurt resource shares, after US energy stocks took a hit overnight on a drop in oil prices from three-year highs.
“The minor decline in Wall Street has spurred some selling pressure in regional markets,” said Manny Cruz, an analyst at Asiasec Equities Inc.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.4 per cent as of 0415 GMT.
Singapore shed as much as 0.3 per cent as financials fell, putting the index on track for its first losing session in four.
The city-state’s export growth slowed more than expected in December due to a fall in electronics trade and the first decline in shipments to China in over a year, data showed.
Singapore’s top lenders Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp and DBS Group lost 0.6 per cent and 0.4 per cent, respectively.
Malaysian shares lost as much as 0.3 per cent, with power generator Tenaga Nasional shedding 0.6 per cent and telecom Axiata Group retreating 1.4 per cent.
Meanwhile, Thai shares reversed early losses to inch higher, as gains in real estate stocks more than offset losses in energy stocks.
Petroleum explorer PTT Exploration and Production fell as much as 2.7 per cent while Land and Houses PCL gained 4.5 per cent to touch its highest in well over four years.
Philippine shares were set for a fourth straight session of gains as Ayala Corp gained 2.2 per cent and International Container Terminal Services firmed 3.4 per cent.
President Rodrigo Duterte yesterday proposed to cut the corporate tax rate and rationalise fiscal incentives to investors in the second of five tax-reform packages submitted to Congress. — Reuters