Tuesday, January 3, 2012

KLCI starts 2012 in negative territory as rally fizzles out

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 3): The FBM KLCI fell into negative territory on the first trading day of 2012 as the rally fizzled out and profit taking activities chipped off its gains made during the final week of 2011.

The 30-stock index fell 1.12% or 17.19 points to 1,513.54, weighed by losses at banking and key blue chips.

The broader market sentiment however was mixed with gainers leading losers by 446 to 325, while 278 counters traded unchanged. Volume was 1.6 billion shares valued at RM1.41 billion.

Meanwhile, better-than-expected data from China's giant manufacturing sector boosted global stocks and the euro on Tuesday and pushed safe-haven bets like German bonds lower, according to Reuters.

Europe's debt crisis still clouds the outlook ahead of a daunting first quarter of borrowing which is expected to push the euro lower and undermine demand for the region's lower-rated sovereigns, it said.

Signs of improved growth in the United States may also cool any speculation about another round of money-printing by the Federal Reserve, improving the outlook for the dollar, it said.

At the regional markets, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index jumped 2.4% to 18,877.41, South Korea's Kospi rose 2.69% to 1,875.41, Taiwan's Taiex gained 1.46% to 7,053.38 and Singapore's Straits Times Index added 1.59% to 2,688.36.

The China and Japan markets were closed today for holidays.

Banking stocks were among the major losers, with Maybank falling 24 sen to RM8.34, Public Bank down 22 sen to RM13.16, CIMB 20 sen to RM7.24, RHB Capital 17 sen to RM7.31, AMMB 15 sen to RM5.80 and Hong Leong Bank 14 sen to RM10.76.

Other losers included BAT that fell 48 sen to RM49.44, Petronas Dagangan 36 sen to RM17.44, Petronas Gas 30 sen to RM14.90, Nestle 20 sen to RM56, while JT International and PPB fell 18 sen each to RM7.21 and RM16.98.

Gainers included KLK that added 30 sen to RM23, Y&G 25 sen to RM1, Genting 24 sen to RM11.24, Hibiscus 22.5 sen to RM1.17, Glenealy, Toyo Ink, IGB and SOP up 20 sen each to RM6.22, RM1.80, RM2.66 and RM5.79, while KPower added 19.5 sen to 47 sen.

Meanwhile, the actives included Hibiscus, Maxbiz, XDL, JCY, Sanichi and DBE Gurney.

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