At 5pm, the FBM KLCI was down 4.70 points or 0.26% to 1,781.37. Turnover was 1.89 billion shares valued at RM1.81bil. There were 376 gainers, 464 losers and 391 stocks unchanged.
Japan, China and Hong Kong key indices closed lower. Reuters reported that a flurry of soft China data rekindled concerns the country’s economy could start to lose some steam.
Data published on Thursday showed China’s fixed-asset investment, a key growth driver for the nation’s economy, grew 7.8% in the first eight months of the year, the weakest pace since December 1999 and cooling from 8.3% in January-July, the wire reported.
The ringgit fell 0.31% to the US dollar at 4.2050 but rose 0.26% to the pound sterling at 5.5485 and advanced 0.08% to the Singapore dollar at 3.1127 while the euro climbed 0.33% to 5.0037 to the euro.
Genting Bhd fell 20 sen to RM9.73 and erased 1.31 points from the KLCI, Genting Malaysia lost seven sen to RM6.58, Tenaga was flat at RM14.58 but IHH Healthcare rose three sen to RM6.
Among the banks, AmBank rebounded 15 sen to RM4.50 and added 0.77 of a point to the KLCI, Maybank gained two sen to RM9.72 and CIMB one sen to RM6.73. Hong Leong Bank, Public Bank and RHB Bank were flat at RM15.90, RM20.58 and RM5.07 respectively. HLFG lost 26 sen to RM17.02.
Crude palm oil for third-month deliveryup RM2 to RM2,876.
As for the plantations, heavyweight IOI Corp fell 10 sen to RM4.54 and erased 1.07 points, PPB Group and KL Kepong lost 12 sen each to RM16.72 and RM24.70 while Sime Darby was flat at RM9.14.
United Plantations fell 34 sen to RM27.80 and Chin Tek 20 sen down at RM7.80. However, Far East added 40 sen to RM9.50 and NSOP 15 sen higher at RM4.05.
Oil prices steadied on Thursday, holding on to recent gains after forecasts for stronger oil demand by the International Energy Agency (IEA). US light crude oil rose 23 cents to US$49.53 and Brent gained 13 cents to US$55.29.
Petronas Chemicals fell five sen to RM7.40, Petronas Gas six sen lower at RM18.60 but Petronas Dagangan added eight sen to RM24.30.
Telekom was down six sen to RM6.35, Digi fell four sen to RM4.87, Axiata and Maxis shed one sen each to RM5.09 and RM5.79.
Globetronics fell for the second day, down 37 sen to RM5.97 with 4.4 million shares done after it was downgraded. MPI lost eoight sen to RM13.88. However, KESM rose 32 sen to RM15.54.
TRIplc gave up all of Wednesday’s gains, down 15 sen to RM1.90.
As for consumer stocks, BAT fell 68 sen to RM43.62 and it was the top loser on Bursa, Heineken fell 18 sen to RM18.98.
Among the key regional markets,
Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.29% to 19,807.44;
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index lost 0.42% to 27,777.20;
CSI 300 fell 0.33% to 3,829.96;
Shanghai’s Composite Index was down 0.38% to 3,371.43;
Hang Seng China Enterprise lost 0.77% to 11,101.14;
Taiwan’s Taiex rose 0.2% to 10,553.57;
South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.74% to 2,377.66 and
Singapore’s Straits Times Index lost 0.29% to 3,220.95.
Spot gold shed eight cents to US$1,323.13.