BUrsa dips as US Fed meeting looms

KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI dipped into the red in Tuesday morning trade as Asian markets were dampened by uncertainty over the Federal Reserve meeting to be held on Tuesday even as Wall Street reached hit record highs overnight.

At midday break, the FBM KLCI was 2.57 points lower to 1,781.09 points. In the broader market, decliners beat advancers 441 to 287 while 352 counters were unchanged. Turnover was 1.196 bil shares with a value of RM781.3mil.

Among finance stocks, decliners included CIMB Group , which was down five sen to RM6.64 and Hong Leong Bank, down two sen to RM15.88. Gainers were PUblic Bank, up two sen to RM20.60, Hong Leong Financial Group, up 10 sen to RM17.14 and RHB Bank up four sen to RM5.12. Maybank was unchanged at RM9.80.

Plantations were among the losers, with KL Kepong down 10 sen to RM24.50, IOI Corp down four sen to RM4.64, Genting down one sen to RM9.85 and Sime Darby down two sen to RM9.17.

In telcos, Digi fell one sen to RM4.86 and Telekom Malaysia was down two sen to RM14.56 and Maxis was up two sen to RM5.76. Time dotCom was one of the morning’s biggest decliners, shaving off 12 sen to RM9.19.

Heavyweights British American Tobacco fell eight sen to RM44.20 while Tenaga Nasional fell two sen to RM14.56.

Oil markets were stable on Tuesday, according to Reuters, as Saudi Arabian crude exports fell but the effects were capped by an expected rise in US shale output.

WTI Crude fell two cents or 0.04% to US$49.89 per barrel while Brent Crude fell 0.16% or nine cents to US$55.39.

Petronas Chemicals rose one sen to RM7.36 while Petronas Dagangan fell four sen to RM24.22 and Petronas Gas was unchanged at RM18.34.

F&N was the biggest decliner on Bursa Malaysia, dropping 48 sen to RM24.32, followed by Unisem which fell 14 sen to RM3.88.

Panasonic Malaysia gained 56 sen to RM38.04, follwed by LPI Capital, up 44 sen to RM17.94 and Ajinomoto up 36 sen to RM20.66.

On the forex market, the ringgit weakened 0.07% against the US dollar to 4.1915. It strengthened 0.2% against the pound sterling at 5.6714 and 0.03% against the Singapore dollar at 3.1106