March 7, 2018 / 4:22 AM / in 5 months

SE Asia Stocks-Fall as trade war concerns resurface after Trump adviser quits

    * Singapore pares previous day's over 1 pct gains
    * Malaysia policy rate announcement later in the day

    By Susan Mathew
    March 7 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets fell
on Wednesday, tracking broader Asian peers, after a free trade
proponent in U.S. President Donald Trump's administration
resigned, rekindling  fears Trump would press ahead with his
protectionist policy. 
    The departure of economic adviser Gary Cohn sparked renewed 
worries Trump may go ahead with his proposed import tariffs on
steel and aluminium, and comes after markets rose in the
previous session on the assumption that growing pressure may
force the U.S. president to rethink the plan.
    Trump, however, stuck to his stance, warning the European
Union that it would get hit with a "big tax" for not treating
the United States well when it comes to trade.
    "While the world appears to be in a safer place this morning
due to the denuclearisation olive branch offered by North Korea,
the market is no less safe from the wrath of Trump's trade
policies," said Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia-Pacific
at Oanda.
    Officials in the United States, South Korea, Japan and
China, however, responded with caution and guarded optimism to
North Korea's apparent willingness to halt nuclear tests,
following months of insults and threats of war between Trump and
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
    In Southeast Asia, Singapore shares lost 0.8 percent,
as top lenders DBS Group Holdings and United Overseas
Bank fell over 1 percent each. The market ended
Tuesday up 1.6 percent.
    The Malaysian index fell ahead of a policy meeting
by its central bank later in the day, where it is expected to
stand pat on rates.
    Indonesia dropped 0.7 percent, with conglomerate
Astra International hitting its lowest in four months
and coal miner Adaro Energy shedding as much as 4.7
percent.
    Asia shares ex-Japan were down 0.3 percent.
    
    
For Asian Companies click;  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: CHANGE AT 0336 GMT
    
 Market              Current        Previous      Pct Move
                                    close         
 Singapore           3461.25        3491.92       -0.88
 Bangkok             1791.78        1799.06       -0.40
 Manila              8342           8360.22       -0.22
 Jakarta             6454.019       6500.111      -0.71
 Kuala Lumpur        1836.86        1848.37       -0.62
 Ho Chi Minh         1125           1120.29       0.42
                                                   
 Change on year                                    
 Market              Current        End 2017      Pct Move
 Singapore           3461.25        3402.92       1.71
 Bangkok             1791.78        1753.71       2.17
 Manila              8342           8558.42       -2.53
 Jakarta             6454.019       6355.654      1.55
 Kuala Lumpur        1836.86        1796.81       2.23
 Ho Chi Minh         1125           984.24        14.30
 


 (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Biju
Dwarakanath)
  
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