By Sandhya Sampath
March 22 Southeast Asian stock markets ended
lower on Wednesday, tracking Asian peers and Wall Street
overnight that fell on worries U.S. President Donald Trump will
struggle to deliver promised tax cuts and on nervousness ahead
of a key healthcare vote.
Trump tried to rally Republican lawmakers behind a plan to
dismantle Obamacare on Tuesday, with moderate Republicans
worrying that millions of Americans will be hurt by the
dismantling of former President Barack Obama's signature
healthcare legislation, while conservative lawmakers believe the
healthcare bill does not go far enough.
Investors worry a failed healthcare push could also portend
trouble for Trump's promise to cut taxes and ease regulation
that have propelled the market to record highs in recent months.
Regional stock markets are down with "the surprise 200-point
drop" in U.S. equities, said Joseph Roxas, president of
Manila-based Eagle Equities Inc.
In Singapore, shares closed 1.3 percent lower, their
third consecutive session of losses, led by energy stocks as
global oil prices dipped on rising crude inventory in the United
Keppel Corporation Ltd fell 1.6 percent, while
Sembcorp Industries Ltd ended 2.8 percent lower.
The Philippine index fell 0.9 percent, weighed down
by financials and consumer stocks, with Metro Pacific
Investments Corp, the biggest loser on the index, down
Indonesian shares ended slightly lower, with an
index of the 45 most liquid stocks down 0.1 percent.
Malaysia closed down 0.4 percent, while Thailand
ended marginally lower.
Vietnam erased earlier gains to close 0.5 percent
lower, pulled down by energy and consumer stocks.
Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp lost 2.6 percent,
while Mobile World Investment Corp fell 1.9 percent.
In Asia, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares
outside Japan fell as much as 1.5 percent, while
overnight in the U.S. the Dow Jones Industrial Average
and the S&P 500 lost more than 1 percent.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: CHANGE ON DAY
Market Current Previous Close Pct Move
Singapore 3118.19 3158.57 -1.28
Bangkok 1566.66 1568.78 -0.14
Manila 7254.93 7323.31 -0.93
Jakarta 5534.093 5543.093 -0.16
Kuala Lumpur 1748.3 1754.67 -0.36
Ho Chi Minh 712.94 716.18 -0.45
Change on year
Market Current End 2016 Pct Move
Singapore 3118.19 2880.76 8.24
Bangkok 1566.66 1542.94 1.54
Manila 7254.93 6840.64 6.1
Jakarta 5534.093 5296.711 4.48
Kuala Lumpur 1748.3 1641.73 6.49
Ho Chi Minh 712.94 664.87 7.2
(Reporting by Sandhya Sampath; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)