December 30, 2019 / 4:36 AM / 25 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most markets rise on trade deal optimism; Malaysia hits over 4-month high

    * Malaysian stocks hit highest since Aug. 9
    * Indonesia sees worst session in 11 days
    * Thai index slightly up ahead of Nov. trade data 

    By Shruti Sonal
    Dec 30 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian markets rose on
Monday, with Malaysian equities hitting an over 4-month high, as
investor sentiment was buoyed by positive developments around
the Sino-U.S. trade deal. 
    South China Morning Post quoted a Chinese official saying
that ­Beijing will live up to its trade deal commitments, but
the United States must also honour the one-China policy in
relation to Taiwan.
    The remarks come as ­Beijing and Washington announced a
Phase 1 trade deal earlier this month, cooling their 18-month
trade war that has rattled financial markets and hurt global
economic sentiments.
    Aiding sentiment was a Xinhua News Agency report that retail
sales in China, the biggest trading partner of most Southeast
Asian countries, are expected to increase 8% in 2019.

    Malaysian shares hit their highest since Aug. 9 as
consumer and utilities jumped.
    Genting Malaysia Bhd and Petronas Gas Bhd
 were the top gainers. 
    Singapore stocks eked out gains on strength in
utilities and industrials.
    Index heavyweight Singapore Telecommunications Ltd
climbed as much as 0.9% on news that it is partnering with
ride-hailing firm Grab Holdings Inc to apply for a digital full
banking licence in Singapore.
    Thai benchmark index was up slightly ahead of
official November trade data announcement, even as volumes
remained low on its last trading day of the year.
    Earlier this month, commerce ministry data showed that the
country recorded a trade surplus of $0.55 billion in November,
compared with a Reuters forecast of a $0.19 billion deficit.

    Indonesian stocks fell 0.2%, marking their worst
session in 11 days, dragged down by technology and utilities.
    IT firm Metrodata Electronics Tbk PT slumped over
11% to hit its lowest since Dec. 3.
    Philippine financial markets are closed from Monday, Dec.
30, till Wednesday, Jan. 1, for public holidays. Trading will
resume on Thursday, Jan. 2.
    
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0341 GMT
        
 STOCK MARKETS                                    
 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3230.89   3226.53         0.14
 Bangkok                1579.27   1578.22         0.07
 Jakarta                6316.353  6329.314        -0.20
 Kuala Lumpur           1615.47   1610.61         0.30
 Ho Chi Minh            967.16    963.51          0.38
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3230.89   3068.76         5.28
 Bangkok                1579.27   1563.88         0.98
 Jakarta                6316.353  6,194.50        1.97
 Kuala Lumpur           1615.47   1690.58         -4.44
 Ho Chi Minh            967.16    892.54          8.36
                                                  
 

 (Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)
  
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