March 23, 2018 / 10:02 AM / a month ago

SE Asia Stocks-Follow global markets lower on rising U.S.-China trade spat

    * Philippines posts fifth consecutive weekly drop
    * Vietnam closes lower for first time in 10 sessions
    * Singapore drops 2 pct, most in 1-1/2 months

    By Aaron Saldanha
    March 23 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets fell
sharply on Friday along with global equities amid an escalating
trade spat between the United States and China.
    China urged the United States on Friday to "pull back from
the brink" as U.S. President Donald Trump's plans for tariffs on
up to $60 billion in Chinese goods brought the world's two
largest economies closer to a trade war.

    "Hopefully... some agreement is reached between them in the
next couple of weeks," said Manny Cruz, an analyst with Asiasec
Equities Inc in the Philippines.
    Singapore shares slumped 2 percent, the most in
one-and-a-half months, on broad-based losses, with DBS Group
Holdings Ltd declining 2.6 percent.  
    Philippine shares dropped 1.9 percent to close below
the 8,000 level for the second time this week, with consumer
cyclicals and telecom services shares the biggest losers. 
    The main stock index dropped 3.3 percent this week, marking
its fifth straight weekly fall - the longest weekly losing
streak since September 2016.
    Heavyweight Ayala Land Inc dropped 3.8 percent,
while SM Investments Corp fell 3.2 percent.
    Indonesian shares closed 0.7 percent lower,
partially recovering from an intraday drop of 2.7 percent. 
    Materials and consumer discretionary stocks weighed the most
on the benchmark index. Telekomunikasi Indonesia, the
biggest weight on the index, fell 1.1 percent.
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
dropped 0.9 percent.
    Indonesia should be the hardest hit in the region in the
event of a trade war due to the export-reliant nature of its
economy, said Asiasec Equities analyst Cruz.
    Malaysian shares fell 0.6 percent, weighed down by 
financials and telecom services. CIMB Group Holdings Bhd
 was the biggest drag with a fall of 1.1 percent.
    Vietnam shares retreated from an all-time peak set on
Thursday, losing 1.6 percent on broad-based losses. The
benchmark index also snapped a nine-session winning streak.
    Financials were the top drags with Joint Stock Commercial
Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam shedding 2.9 percent.
    Broader Asian shares outside Japan were 2.2
percent lower.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: Change on day
   
  Market                 Current      Previous close  Pct Move
  Singapore              3421.39      3491.37         -2.00
  Bangkok                1794.21      1798.55         -0.24
  Manila                 7970.8       8124.45         -1.89
  Jakarta                6210.698     6254.074        -0.69
  Kuala Lumpur           1865.22      1876.87         -0.62
 Ho Chi Minh             1153.59      1172.36         -1.60
                                                      
  Change so far in 2018                               
  Market                 Current      End 2017        Pct Move
  Singapore              3421.39      3402.92         0.54
  Bangkok                1794.21      1753.71         2.31
  Manila                 7970.8       8558.42         -6.87
  Jakarta                6210.698     6355.654        -2.28
  Kuala Lumpur           1865.22      1796.81         3.81
  Ho Chi Minh            1153.59      984.24          17.21
 
 (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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