October 29, 2019 / 10:26 AM / 16 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most gain on trade deal hopes; Philippines leads

    * Markets await Fed cut; 25-bp cut expected 
    * "Ahead of schedule" on China trade deal, Trump says
    * Thai Sept factory output worse than forecast

    By Sameer Manekar
    Oct 29 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets
finished higher on Tuesday, with Philippines leading gains, amid
hopes of progress in the Sino-U.S. trade talks and a third rate
cut by the Federal Reserve later this week.
    U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday he expected to
sign a significant part of a trade deal with China "ahead of
schedule," with the signing planned during a summit in Chile
next month.
    Trump's statements follow remarks by U.S. and Chinese
officials last week, saying the two sides were "close to
finalising" parts of a trade deal.
    Further boosting the sentiment was the U.S. Trade
Representative's consideration of extension of tariff
suspensions on $34 billion of Chinese goods, which is set to
expire on Dec. 28.
    The United States Federal Reserve is expected to cut
interest rates for the third time this year in its two-day
policy meeting beginning Tuesday.
    "With easing trade tensions, and better-than-expected
results, so far, confidence is building up in the market. And
with the rate cut expected from the U.S. Federal Reserve, there
is a confluence of factors that is adding to the positive
sentiments," said Joel Ng, analyst at KGI securities.
    Leading the gains in the region, the Philippine index
gained 0.6% on the back of financials.
    Index heavyweight SM Prime Holdings and
Metropolitan Bank and Trust rose 2.4% and 1%,
    Financials and consumer sector lifted the Malaysian
benchmark, which gained 0.5%. RHB Bank gained
2.9% while Sime Darby Plantation added 2.3%.
    Singapore shares closed 0.4% up, after hitting their
highest in nearly three months earlier in the day.
    Index heavyweights Jardine Matheson Holdings and
Jardine Strategic Holdings added 3.6% each, while a
2.4% rise in Singapore Exchange Ltd lifted the
financial sectors.
    Thai stocks swung between positive and negative
territory during the session before finishing 0.3% lower amid
contracting factory output in September and a lower growth
forecast by the finance ministry.
    Data by industry ministry showed Thailand's September
factory output coming in worse-than-expected, falling 4.7%
annually as compared to a 4.4% contraction in August.

    On Monday, the finance ministry cut Thailand's 2019 economic
growth forecast to 2.8%, and said it expects exports to decline
2.5%. This comes after the United States suspended duty-free
trade treatment of Thai imports worth $1.3 billion on Friday.

    Utilities and financials firms lost the most, with Global
Power Synergy PCL and Kasikornbank PCL
losing 8.2% and 3.7%, respectively.
    Indonesian stocks gained 0.25%, rising for a second
straight session.
    Materials and communication firms were among the top
performers with state-owned Telekomunikasi Indonesia
rising 1.6% and Indah Kiat Pulp & Paper gained 4.8%.
For Asian Companies click;  

 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3197.04   3185.53         0.36
 Bangkok                1591.21   1596.48         -0.33
 Manila                 7991.19   7946.53         0.56
 Jakarta                6281.138  6265.384        0.25
 Kuala Lumpur           1577.79   1570            0.50
 Ho Chi Minh            995.87    996.48          -0.06
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3197.04   3068.76         4.18
 Bangkok                1591.21   1563.88         1.75
 Manila                 7991.19   7,466.02        7.03
 Jakarta                6281.138  6,194.50        1.40
 Kuala Lumpur           1577.79   1690.58         -6.67
 Ho Chi Minh            995.87    892.54          11.58

 (Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi
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