Monday, November 21, 2011

Asian markets mired in red over grim economic outlook

KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 21): Asian equity markets, including Bursa Malaysia, remained in negative territory on Monday as Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Qishan warned'' that the global economy remains in a grim state.

Global markets have been on the retreat since last week as uncertainty remained over how euro zone leaders would respond to mounting funding difficulties for European banks.

At the mid-day break, the FBM KLCI was down 14.38 points to 1,440.02, weighed by losses at select blue chips.

Market breadth was negative with losers leading gainers by 582 to 110, while 194 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 707.77 million shares valued at RM491.99 million.

The ringgit fell 0.24% to 3.1727 versus the US dollar; crude palm oil futures for the third month delivery fell RM28 per tonne to RM3,220, crude oil slipped four cents per barrel to US$97.63 while gold shed US$1.05 an ounce to US$1,722.90.

Asian stocks fell as Wang's warning, made at the annual U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, or JCCT, in the southwest Chinese city of Chengdu, echoed his comments over the weekend that a long-term global recession was certain and China must focus on its domestic problems, according to Reuters.

Policymakers globally are expressing increasing alarm at the risks facing the world economy, mainly stemming from financial contagion in Europe. Several central banks, including those in the euro zone, Australia, Brazil and Indonesia, have cut official interest rates to support their economies, it said.

At the regional markets, Japan's Nikkei 225 shed 0.23% to 8,355.43, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index lost 1.83% to 18,152.99, the Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.37% to 2,407.74, Taiwan's Taiex lost 2.19% to 7,075.25, South Korea's Kospi fell 1.37% to 1,814.02 and Singapore's Straits Times Index was down 0.80% to 2,708.39.

On Bursa Malaysia, PPB fell 38 sen to RM16.14, KLK lost 36 sen to RM20.72, Nestle and Fima Corp 30 sen each to RM49.70 and RM5.80, GAB 28 sen to RM10.64, MISC 26 sen to RM6.19, Hong Leong Bank 24 sen to RM10.30, BLD PLANTATION []s 23 sen to RM6.73 while Panasonic and Petronas Gas fell 20 sen each to RM19.60 and RM13.02.

Compugates was the most actively traded counter with 33.1 million shares done. The stock was unchanged at 8 sen.

Other actives included Fastrak, Flonic, DPS Resources, Tiger, Karambunai, Sumatec, Extol, SYF Resources and Frontken.

Meanwhile, gainers included Harvest Court, DiGi, RHB Capital, KrisAssets, Sarawak Oil Palms, Glenealy and Dutch Lady.

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