By Susan Mathew
Feb 23 Southeast Asian stock markets were
largely flat in lacklustre trading on Thursday after the U.S.
Federal Reserve indicated willingness to raise interest rates,
but cautioned about a lack of clarity on the Trump
administration's economic policies.
The Fed's January meeting minutes said that it may be
appropriate to raise rates again "fairly soon" should jobs and
inflation data be in line with expectations, but it also
reflected the depth of uncertainty at the Fed over economic
risks from President Donald Trump's plans.
Investors are cautious about the "global uncertainties
related to Trump's economic policies as well as the interest
rate direction of the Federal Reserve, which was actually a
non-event," said Taye Shim, head of research at Mirae Asset
"So most of the investors within the emerging markets are
pretty much on the sidelines."
Thai shares fell the most in the region, down 0.4
percent, with energy and financial sectors dragging down the
Lenders Siam Commercial Bank and Kasikornbank PCL
fell 0.7 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively.
Among energy stocks, PTT Pcl lost 1 percent, while
and PTT Exploration shed nearly 2 percent.
Singapore stocks were mostly steady ahead of the consumer
price inflation data for January due later in the day.
Singapore's consumer price index for January is expected to
have risen at the fastest pace in more than two years to 0.6
percent from a year earlier, buoyed by higher fuel prices and
private transport costs, a Reuters poll showed.
Agribusiness company Wilmar International was
among the losers, falling 2.4 percent for a fourth straight
session to its lowest in more than a month.
Philippine shares rose 0.2 percent for a second
straight day, hitting its highest in over three weeks.
Energy and utility stocks lent support to the index, with
Semirara Mining and Power Corp climbing 2.6 percent and
Manila Electric Co rising 1.4 percent.
For Asian Companies click;
SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: CHANGE AT 0414 GMT
Market Current Previous Close Pct Move
Singapore 3121.31 3122.2 -0.03
Bangkok 1566.47 1572.04 -0.35
Manila 7319.01 7304.45 0.20
Jakarta 5365.552 5358.683 0.13
Kuala Lumpur 1707.67 1708.08 -0.02
Ho Chi Minh 716.93 717.24 -0.04
Change on year
Market Current End 2016 Pct Move
Singapore 3121.31 2880.76 8.35
Bangkok 1566.47 1542.94 1.53
Manila 7319.01 6840.64 7.00
Jakarta 5365.552 5296.711 1.30
Kuala Lumpur 1707.67 1641.73 4.02
Ho Chi Minh 716.93 644.87 11.2
(Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; additional reporting
by Christina Martin; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)