US interest rate cuts drive Bursa Malaysia higher

At 9.10 am, FBM KLCI bagged 8.34 points to 1,460.06 with gains seen across almost all sectors

Bursa Malaysia opens higher on mild bargain-hunting - Bernama pic.
Bursa Malaysia opens higher on mild bargain-hunting - Bernama pic.

KUALA LUMPUR — Bursa Malaysia opened higher after US inflation data for October signaled that the Federal Reserve’s (Fed) interest rate hiking campaign is finally over, boosting hopes for a cut soon.

At 9.10 am, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) bagged 8.34 points to 1,460.06 with gains seen across almost all sectors.

The index rose by 1.89 points to 1,453.61 from Tuesday’s closing of 1,451.72.

On the broader market, gainers outpaced losers 292 to 102, while 273 counters were unchanged, 1,713 untraded and nine others suspended.

Turnover amounted to 536.83 million units valued at RM136.6 million.

Rakuten Trade equity research vice-president Thong Pak Leng said the performance mirrored Wall Street’s rally as traders cheered the October consumer price index (CPI), which came in lower than expected at 3.2 per cent.

“Core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices, actually rose the slowest in two years, suggesting the Fed’s rate has reached a peak.

“Therefore, the Dow Jones jumped 1.43 per cent while the Nasdaq surged 2.37 per cent as the US 10-year yield eased to 4.453 per cent,” he told Bernama.

In line with the optimism from the United States, he expected the FBM KLCI to maintain its positive momentum, trending within the 1,455-1,465 range today (15 Nov).

On top of that, he said, local plantation stocks could see some buying interest today as crude palm oil (CPO) price improved to above the RM3,900 per tonne level due to higher imports from India.

Among the heavyweights, only Hong Leong Financial Group was in the red, losing two sen to RM17.16.

Maybank, IHH and Sime Darby Plantation rose four sen each to RM9.15, RM5.95 and RM4.43, respectively, while Public Bank gained two sen to RM4.20 and CIMB was up three sen to RM5.76.

Of the actives, Hong Seng added one sen to 4.0 sen, newly listed Plytec dropped 1.5 sen to 33.5 sen, and SC Estate Builder was flat at 4.0 sen.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index was 57.45 points higher at 10,787.04, the FBMT 100 Index went up 56.60 points to 10,448.72, the FBM Emas Shariah Index added 59.12 points to 11,002.55, the FBM 70 Index gained 63.72 points to 14,242.13, and the FBM ACE Index increased 46.87 points to 5,163.29.

Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index rose 70.87 points to 16,392.52, the Plantation Index advanced 41.26 points to 6,994.30, the Industrial Products and Services Index inched up 0.73 of-a-point to 173.97, and the Energy Index expanded 2.41 points to 801.89. — Bernama

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