January 25, 2018 / 4:52 AM / 10 months ago

REFILE-SE Asia Stocks-Most rise; Singapore falls after 4 sessions of gains

 (Fixes typographical error in 11th paragraph)
    * Vietnam re-opens after two-day closure, jumps 2.5 pct
    * Philippines up for fourth session in five
    * Indonesia down for second consecutive session

    By Nicole Pinto
    Jan 25 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose
on Thursday in line with broader Asia, while investors awaited
U.S. President Donald Trump's speech in Davos amid worries about
global trade wars.
    Trump signed into law a steep tariff on imported solar
panels, which is among the first unilateral trade restrictions
imposed by the administration as part of a broader protectionist
agenda.
    The dollar skidded to a three-year low against its peers
after caving on comments by U.S. Treasury secretary Steven
Mnuchin that he welcomed a weaker currency.
    Mnuchin told the World Economic Forum in Davos on Wednesday
that "obviously a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to
trade and opportunities." His comments were seen by markets as a
departure from traditional U.S. currency policy. 
    Trump is scheduled to speak in Davos later on Thursday.
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 was up 0.15 percent, while Japan's Nikkei
 fell 0.8 percent.
    Among Southeast Asian stock markets, Vietnam rose as
much as 2.5 percent to its highest since May 2007 after a
two-day closure due to technical issues.
    The rise was mainly led by financials with Joint Stock
Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Viet Nam jumping
4.7 percent to a record high and Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock
Corp hitting a more than 3-year high. 
    "It is hard to say whether the market would correct
immediately. The fundamentals like macroeconomics, inflows, M&A
deals, privatisations are still lending support. The market
might correct a little bit, which is actually a good thing,
making it stable," said Le Thu Ha, an investment analyst with
Vietcombank Securities
     Philippine shares rose as much as 0.4 percent before
paring the gains. 
    "Yesterday we had a correction and some profit-taking, so
today we are seeing stocks that declined recover what they
lost," said Jeffrey Lucero, an equity research analyst at RCBC
Securities.
    Index heavyweight Jollibee Foods Corp gained up to
3.9 percent to a record high after falling in the previous two
sessions, while real estate conglomerate Ayala Land Inc
also touched an all-time peak. 
    "The short-term uptrend remains intact, but probably some
consolidation before it finally breaks out of its resistance,"
Lucero added. 
    Malaysian shares edged up ahead of a central bank
policy meeting later in the day.
    Bank Negara Malaysia is expected to raise its overnight
policy rate by 25 basis points to 3.25 percent, a
Reuters poll showed.
    Petronas Gas Bhd gained as much as 1.7 percent and
Genting Malaysia Bhd rose nearly 1 percent.
    Singapore shares fell after four consecutive sessions
of gains with financials and industrials weighing on the index.
    DBS Group Holdings Ltd fell for the first time in
five sessions, declining as much as 1.3 percent, while Keppel
Corp Ltd dropped up to 1.9 percent.   
    "A lot of stocks had run-up over the last week, so I guess
it's a slight pullback... but going forward I think earnings
could provide a lift," said Joel Ng, an analyst with KGI
Securities in Singapore.      
    
For Asian Companies click;  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: Change as at 0441 GMT
 Change on the day                            
 Market             Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3584.87   3609.24         -0.68
 Bangkok            1843.92   1838.96         0.27
 Manila             8921.49   8920.23         0.01
 Jakarta            6601.066  6615.492        -0.22
 Kuala Lumpur       1840.65   1837.04         0.20
 Ho Chi Minh        1114.07   1087.42         2.45
                                              
 Change on year                               
 Market             Current   End prev yr     Pct Move
 Singapore          3584.87   3402.92         5.35
 Bangkok            1843.92   1753.71         5.14
 Manila             8921.49   6840.64         30.42
 Jakarta            6601.066  6355.654        3.86
 Kuala Lumpur       1840.65   1796.81         2.44
 Ho Chi Minh        1114.07   664.87          67.56
 

 (Reporting by Nicole Pinto; Additional reporting by Mai Nguyen;
Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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