September 12, 2019 / 4:51 AM / 3 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Tepid as Sino-U.S. trade thaw fails to lift sentiment

    * U.S. delays tariffs on Chinese goods by two weeks
    * Malaysia edges up ahead of central bank decision
    * Singapore sees worst session since Sept 2

    By Anushka Trivedi
    Sept 12 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets were
subdued on Thursday, with the Philippines leading declines, as a
temporary relief in the unpredictable trade spat between
Washington and Beijing failed to impress investors. 
    The world's two largest economies granted concessions in
their heated tariff dispute on Wednesday ahead of planned talks.
China exempted a basket of U.S. goods from its own tariffs,
while U.S. President Donald Trump said he would delay a
scheduled tariff hike by two weeks in October.
    Bouts of optimism have unravelled very quickly due to the
erratic and unpredictable nature of the U.S.-China trade
negotiations, which "ensures a lingering air of caution over
global markets, even as risk assets are given another
opportunity to make hay while the sun shines," Han Tan, market
analyst at FXTM said in a note.    
    The Singapore benchmark index, among the most
vulnerable to the trade dispute with China being the region's
biggest trading partner, marked its worst session in over a
week.
    Leading losses, industrial conglomerate Jardine Matheson
Holdings dropped 3.2%, while Hongkong Land Holdings
 fell 2.7%.
    The Philippine bourse ticked down 0.3% amid
broad-based losses.
    Recent market activity suggests a lack of foreign inflows in
the emerging markets and so the trading has been sideways, and
that "most investors in the Philippine market are worried that
this trade deal (between the U.S. and China) will not happen any
time soon," Rachel Cruz, a research analyst with AP Securities
said.
    Property developer Ayala Land Inc and heavyweight
SM Investments Corp were among the top drags in the
Philippine benchmark, shedding 1.8% and 1%, respectively.    
    Vietnam stocks recovered from the previous session's
lacklustre trade, lifted by financial and real estate sectors.
    Malaysian stocks edged up ahead of the central bank
policy review, with Mizuho stating it sees a 60% probability of
a 25 bps rate cut.
    Petronas Chemicals Group, the top gainer in the
index, gained over 5%, while hospitality services provider
Genting Malaysia Bhd added 1.9%.
    Meanwhile, the Thai and Indonesian indexes
flitted between positive and negative territory. 
   
For Asian Companies click;  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS As at 0444 GMT
    
 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3198.33   3204.52         -0.19
 Bangkok                1674.56   1674.03          0.03
 Manila                 7945.35   7967.9          -0.28
 Jakarta                6363.792  6381.954        -0.28
 Kuala Lumpur           1606.43   1602.3           0.26
 Ho Chi Minh            973.26    969.31           0.41
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3198.33   3068.76         4.22
 Bangkok                1674.56   1563.88         7.08
 Manila                 7945.35   7,466.02        6.42
 Jakarta                6363.792  6,194.50        2.73
 Kuala Lumpur           1606.43   1690.58         -4.98
 Ho Chi Minh            973.26    892.54          9.04
 
     


 (Reporting by Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry
Jacob-Phillips)
  
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