Bursa ends sharply lower across the board

Bursa Malaysia (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: Share prices ended sharply lower across the board on Bursa Malaysia today due to a mix of local and external factors as investors, among others, cautiously digested government plans to introduce new taxes to reduce its debt obligation.

The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) decreased 38.97 points or 2.197 per cent to end at 1,735.18 versus Tuesday’s close of 1,774.15.

The index moved within a wide range of 1,732.5 and 1,781.79 today after opening 7.57 points higher at 1,781.72.

Yesterday, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that the government was considering new taxes to raise revenue in order to repay massive debts.

A dealer said market sentiment was also fragile amid warnings by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that risks were building up in the global financial system, coupled with a further escalation in the trade tension between the United States and China which could push the situation over the edge.

The IMF maintained its economic growth outlook on the US and China at 2.9% and 6.6%, respectively, in 2018, and to slow down to 2.5% and 6.2%, respectively, next year. It also slashed its expectation for emerging markets in 2019.

On Bursa Malaysia’s scoreboard, market breadth was negative with losers thumping gainers 993 to 116 while 286 counters were unchanged, 479 untraded and 18 others were suspended.

Volume was higher at 3.02 billion units, valued at RM2.96 billion, against Tuesday’s 1.80 billion units, worth RM1.53 billion.

Of heavyweights, Public Bank added two sen to RM24.98, Maybank slipped 14 sen to RM9.51, Petronas Chemicals eased one sen to RM9.36 and Hong Leong Bank shed four sen to RM20.56.

Axiata trimmed 51 sen to RM3.85, TNB lost 70 sen to RM14.68, CIMB gave up 20 sen to RM5.84, and Telekom Malaysia declined 48 sen to RM2.55.

As for actives, Borneo Oil was flat at 5.5 sen, Sapura Energy was 1.5 sen easier at 36 sen, Hibiscus Petroleum edged down five sen to RM1.25 and MYEG shed three sen to RM1.52.

Gamuda lost 31 sen to RM2.07 after reacting negatively to news that the MRT2 contract would be terminated.

The FBM Emas Index trimmed 287.90 points to 12,016.02, the FBM Emas Shariah Index declined 336.74 points to 12,023.90 and the FBMT 100 Index eased 283.77 points to 11,834.91.

The FBM Ace Index decreased 161.15 points to 5,027.46 while the FBM 70 erased 402.51 points to 13,870.27.

Sector-wise, the Plantation Index slipped 46.03 points to 7,449.27, the Financial Services Index weakened 191.03 points to 17,487.66 while the Industrial Products and Services Index eased 1.79 points to 173.27.

Main Market volume advanced to 1.95 billion shares, worth RM2.77 billion, against Tuesday’s 1.23 billion shares valued at RM1.41 billion.

Warrants turnover increased to 569.73 million units, valued at RM93.28 million, from 316.13 million units valued, at RM68.10 million, yesterday.

Volume on the ACE Market advanced to 507.26 million units, worth RM96.44 million, from 258.92 million units, valued at RM51.89 million.

Consumer products and services accounted for 291.45 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (379.76 million), construction (272.999 million), technology (194.03 million), SPAC (227,000), financial services (55.92 million), property (141.48 million), plantations (22.67 million), REITs (4.72 million), closed/fund (31,000), energy (414.23 million), healthcare (32.07 million), telecommunication and media (66.95 million), transportation and logistics (34.17 million), and utilities (36.70 million).