Bursa Malaysia ends higher, following performance of regional markets

BURSA Malaysia ended the week marginally higher on mild buying momentum in heavyweights, technology and small-cap stocks, in line with better performance in regional markets following the overnight rally on Wall Street.  

At 5 pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) rose 2.71 points to 1,585.35 from Thursday’s close of 1,582.64.     

The index opened 3.87 points higher at 1,586.51 and moved between 1,582.65 and 1,588.72 throughout the day. 

On the broader market, gainers outpaced losers 621 to 407, while 443 counters were unchanged, 653 untraded and nine others suspended.

Total volume declined to 6.62 billion shares valued at RM2.92 bil from 7.92 billion shares valued at RM3.71 bil on Thursday.   

Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd economist Adam Mohamed Rahim said the local bourse’s performance on Friday was in tandem with most Asian peers as sentiment was boosted by US President Joe Biden’s US$2 tril infrastructure plan, which is expected to bolster the country’s economy.

Adam said gains on the local bourse were anchored by Top Glove’s 2.4 per cent gain as no new additional issues on forced labour has been discovered, but some rectification and verification works are required on the earlier forced labour findings.

At the close, Top Glove advanced 11 sen to RM4.75, with 18,811,800 shares traded. Other glove counters, Supermax was flat at RM3.95 while Hartalega declined four sen to RM8.98.

“Sector wise, the Bursa Malaysia Technology Index was the biggest gainer, rising 2.4 per cent, in line with the overnight rally in the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite,” Adam said.

Bursa Malaysia’s Technology Index put on 2.03 points to 87.35.

Meanwhile, a dealer said the local bourse managed to end the week in the positive territory due to an optimistic IHS Malaysia Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for March. 

On Thursday, IHS Market announced the headline Malaysia Manufacturing PMI — a composite single-figure indicator of manufacturing performance — rose to 49.9 in March from 47.7 in February this year.

It said the latest reading pointed to a stabilisation in operating conditions, with the headline index reaching its highest since July 2020.

Regionally, Japan’s Nikkei 225 strengthened 1.58% to 29,854.0, Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.52% to 3,181.68, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng jumped 1.97% to 28,938.74.

On the home front, heavyweights Public Bank rose two sen to RM4.24, CIMB advanced five sen to RM4.41, while Maybank, TNB, and Press Metal were all flat at RM8.25, RM10.26 and RM10.06 respectively.

Petronas Chemicals eased five sen to RM8 and IHH Healthcare fell one sen to RM5.29. 

As for active counters, Luster Industries and Berjaya Corp were 1.5 sen higher at 23 sen and 45 sen, Permaju edged up half-a-sen to 21 sen, HB Global was flat at 28 sen, Macpie shed two sen to 15 sen, and DGB Asia trimmed one sen to 6.5 sen.  – Apr 2, 2021

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