September 23, 2019 / 9:57 AM / 2 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Skid amid mixed signals on trade talks progress

    * Thailand top loser with 0.8% drop
    * Philippines down for fifth session
    * Vietnam reverses course to end lower 

    By Shriya Ramakrishnan
    Sept 23 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets closed
lower on Monday as a trade deal between the United States and
China appeared to be elusive following mixed signals from
recently concluded negotiations.
    U.S. and Chinese officials described deputy-level talks that
ended in Washington last week as "productive" and
"constructive", but Chinese officials unexpectedly cancelled a
visit to U.S. farms, denting investor sentiment.
    Meanwhile, U.S. President Donald Trump reiterated that he
wanted a complete trade deal, not just an agreement for China to
buy more U.S. agricultural goods.
    "Challenges to achieving a comprehensive deal remain, such
as the issues of intellectual property and their enforcement,
the amount of purchases by China and whether and when existing
tariffs will be rolled back," analysts at Morgan Stanley said in
a client note.
    Thai shares slipped 0.8%, extending losses into a
fourth session, on weakness in telecom and financial stocks.
Kasikornbank Pcl and telco firm Intouch Holdings Pcl
 shed 1.2% and 5.5%, respectively.
    Traders now await August manufacturing data, due on Tuesday,
for further clues about the domestic economy. Manufacturing
output likely dropped at a faster pace in August than in the
previous month, a Reuters poll showed.
    Singapore shares, which are sensitive to trade
developments, fell 0.5%, with financial and consumer stocks
accounting for most of the losses.
    Singapore Exchange dropped as much as 1.6% to a
near three-week low following a rating downgrade by brokerage
firm Jefferies, while DBS Group Holdings dipped 1%.
    The city-state's core inflation gauge in August remained at
a 3-year low, data showed, reinforcing expectations for policy
easing this year.
    Philippine shares fell as much as 0.6% before cutting
losses on the back of financial and consumer stocks. The index
closed lower for a fifth straight session, shedding 0.1% on
Monday. 
    Investors now wait for a central bank policy meeting on
Thursday, where Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas is expected to cut
interest rates for a third time this year, according to a
Reuters poll, to support economic growth.
    "Monetary stimulus is still very much expected but what
people are looking for is for the Philippines to maintain an
above 6% GDP growth strength, and that is key for foreign
inflows," said Rachelle C Cruz, analyst at Manila-based AP
Securities.
    Vietnam stocks reversed course to drop 0.5%, dragged
by financial and real estate names, while telecoms pushed the
Indonesian index 0.4% lower. 
    
    For Asian Companies click;  

  SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS   
 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3143.24   3159.68         -0.52
 Bangkok                1622.79   1636.2          -0.82
 Manila                 7867.51   7871.11         -0.05
 Jakarta                6206.199  6231.473        -0.41
 Kuala Lumpur           1592.93   1597.41         -0.28
 Ho Chi Minh            985.75    990.36          -0.47
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3143.24   3068.76         2.43
 Bangkok                1622.79   1563.88         3.77
 Manila                 7867.51   7,466.02        5.38
 Jakarta                6206.199  6,194.50        0.19
 Kuala Lumpur           1592.93   1690.58         -5.78
 Ho Chi Minh            985.75    892.54          10.44
 
 (Reporting by Shriya Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
  
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