Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Asian stocks extend losses as confidence takes severe hit

KUALA LUMPUR: Asian stocks, including at Bursa Malaysia, remained in the red on Tuesday, Oct 4 as investor confidence continued to be shattered, as the admission by Greece yesterday that it would miss deficit targets fuelled further fears of a global recession.

Overnight, US stocks slumped in heavy volume to a 13-month low on Monday as investors dumped bank shares on fears that Greece's worsening financial crisis could cause a large European lender to fail, according to Reuters.

Investors pegged losses to the sharp fall in Franco-Belgian financial group Dexia, which fell 10 percent after a Moody's warning about its liquidity due to concerns about exposure to Greece, it said.

The FBM KLCI was down 3.94 points to 1,363.58 at 10am, as losers led gainers by 189 to 127, while 173 counters traded unchanged.

Volume was 143.48 million shares valued at RM180.74 million.

At the regional markets, South Korea's Kospi tumbled 4.41% to 1,691.67, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 1.53% to 8,414.43, Singapore's Straits Times Index lost 1.21% to 2,589.77, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index edged down 0.22% to 16,784.61 and Taiwan's Taiex shed 0.06% to 7,009.90.

China's stock markets will remain closed the whole of this week for the republic's national day holidays.

BIMB Securities Research in a note Oct 4 said the longer the uncertainty over Greece persists with policy makers still deliberating on a bailout, the more edgy investors would get as did in the US during the debate over its debt ceiling.

As depicted on Wall Street overnight, the edgy investors finally gave way to a sell down hence the 260 point drop for the Dow Jones Industrial Average, it said.

The research house said that with the risk/reward now gravitating towards the downside, global equity markets are bracing themselves for another round of backlash unless plans are afoot to stem the current decline.

A more glaring indicator has been a flight to safety with the 10-year US Treasury where yield has declined to 1.79% from 1.92% last Friday, it said.

'Regionally, Asian bourses were swimming in a sea of red yesterday and today may not be any different.

'Locally, we reckon the FBM KLCI would be faced with more selling pressure today with 1,350 as the immediate support level,' it said.

On Bursa Malaysia, KLK was the top loser and fell 32 sen to RM20.18; Cahya Mata Sarawak and Lafarge Malayan Cement lost 21 sen each to RM1.74 and RM6.69, Genting 12 sen to RM8.88, QSR 11 sen to RM5.29, Eurospan, BAT and MISC fell 10 sen each to 30.5 sen, RM44.02 and RM5.80 respectively, while CIMB lost nine sen to RM6.81.

Meanwhile, Glove manufacturers were among the top gainers at mid-morning, with Supermax up 21 sen to RM2.98, Top Glove 20 sen to RM4.12, Kossan and Adventa up 15 sen each to RM2.84 and RM1.65, Latexx 12 sen to RM1.50 while Hartalega gained seven sen to RM5.45.

Other gainers included Quality Concrete, BHIC and Nestle.

The actives at mid-morning included MAA, SP Setia, IRCB, Takaso, AirAsia, Key West, Latexx and Wijaya.

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