KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia’s benchmark FBM KLCI headed for a sixth straight day of gains as it closed off the morning session with a 2.73-point gain to 1,452.02.
Helping to bolster market sentiment was the extended winning streak in US markets as the Federal Reserve yesterday raised its benchmark interest rate for what many analysts expect to be the last hike in the current cycle.
On the domestic front, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced government initiatives at the launch of the Madani Economy plan, which also helped to shore up investor sentiment.
At the lunch break, the overall Malaysian stock market was improved with 419 gainers compared to 383 decliners. Trading volume was 2.05 billion shares valued at RM1.18bil.
The banking sector was seen ticking higher with CIMB adding five sne to RM5.53, Hong Leong Bank gaining four sen to RM19.60 and Public Bank rising one sen to RM4.09.
PETRONAS Chemicals was a leading laggards, dropping 20 sen to RM6.80.
AirAsia X was also a big winner as it jumped 32 sen to RM2.12 while Capital A gained 6.5 sen to 90.5 sen.
Hextar Technologies climbed 68 sen to RM26.98 while Kora rose 19 sen to RM5.57 and KESM added 10 sen to RM7.40.
Among the most active on the market was Hong Seng down 0.5 sen to 8.5 sen, AT unchanged at one sen and Datasonic up 2.5 sen to 47.5 sen.
Across the region, investor sentiment was optimistic following the announcement of the Fed’s latest rate hike and Fed chair Jerome Powell’s comments, which met expectations.
China’s main index was up 0.4% to 3,237 while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng jumped 1.4% to 19,629.
Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.7% to 32,909 and South Korea’s Kospi added 0.7% to 2,610.
– The Star