Bursa opens marginally higher

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 8): Bursa Malaysia opened marginally higher on Friday (April 8), taking its cue from the overnight Wall Street performance which rebounded on bargain-hunting after the large losses incurred the previous day, dealers said.

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At 9.04am, the benchmark FBM KLCI was 0.40 of a point better at 1,601.19 from Thursday’s close at 1,600.79.

The barometer index opened 2.94 points better at 1,603.73.

On the broader market, losers led gainers 173 to 69, while 248 counters were unchanged, 1,746 untraded and 16 others suspended.

Total turnover stood at 162.24 million worth RM50.33 million.

In a note, Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd said the KLCI shed gains in tandem with regional peers on Thursday after the US Federal Reserve meeting minutes put investors’ focus on the possibility of more aggressive US interest rate hikes.

“Still, we expect the local bourse to trade in consolidation mode as investors mull over the US’ hawkish stance as well as the Russia sanctions. Nevertheless, we believe the downside risk may be cushioned by a recovery in business activities,” it said.

Commodity-wise, it noted that both crude oil and crude palm oil (CPO) were traded lower, hovering just above US$100 (about RM422.10) per barrel and RM5,800 per tonne respectively.

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“Given the elevated crude oil and CPO futures prices, we expect investors to favour plantation and selected oil and gas counters over the near term until the May reporting season.

“Meanwhile, we remain optimistic about the recovery-themed sectors, as well as the construction and building material segments, as traders may position themselves ahead of the 15th general election, albeit the timeline is still unclear,” it added.

Among the heavyweights, Public Bank Bhd added one sen to RM4.69, Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd fell eight sen to RM10.10 and CIMB Group Holdings Bhd slipped four sen to RM5.31, while Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) and IHH Healthcare Bhd were flat at RM8.83 and RM6.41 respectively.

Of the actives, Brahim’s Holdings Bhd declined eight sen to 3.5 sen, TWL Holdings Bhd and Yong Tai Bhd edged up half a sen to 8.5 sen and 13 sen respectively, while China Ouhua Winery Holdings Ltd and the TWL warrant were flat at 9.5 sen and 4.5 sen respectively.

On the index board, the FBMT 100 Index added 8.93 points to 11,162.06, the FBM Emas Index was 10.72 points higher at 11,510.58 and the FBM Emas Shariah Index gained 19.19 points to 12,153.74.

FBM 70 advanced 36.20 points to 13,971.57, while FBM ACE eased 5.90 points to 5,822.42.

Sector-wise, the Industrial Products and Services Index inched down 0.19 of a point to 211.37, whereas the Financial Services Index slipped 15.56 points to 16,753.88, while the Plantation Index rose 11.17 points to 8,347.93.-BERNAMA