ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) composite index moved down 6.60 points, or 0.87 percent, to close at 754.58 points on Friday.Some 1.80 billion shares worth 18.13 billion baht (about 566 million U.S. dollars) changed hands. Thailand’s stock market fell nearly 2 percent at one stage on Friday as the country’s top broker warned escalating political violence could lead to civil war and anyone buying Thai shares now was taking “a huge risk”. Shayne Heffernan of Ebeling Heffernan remains confident saying buy quality Thai stocks now and you will do very well long term.
Riot police confronted “red shirt” anti-government protesters at a barricade in Bangkok’s business district on Friday, a day after grenade attacks in the area killed at least one person, but pulled back without violence.
The market’s biggest stocks were among fallers on Friday, with a 1.6 percent fall in top energy firm PTT PTT.BK, 3.2 percent in third-largest lender Siam Commercial Bank SCB and a 1.3 percent fall in top lender Bangkok Bank BBL.
Retailers and hotel operators, especially those with operations in protest areas, continued to suffer. Hotelier Erawan Group ERAW, which runs the Grand Hyatt Erawan, slid 3.6 percent, while hypermarket group Big C Supercenter BIGC fell 1.2 percent after it said it would relocate its head office from the Rachaprasong area. ($1=32.17 Baht)
The Malaysia stock market ended lower here on Friday.
The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index (KLCI) was at 1,336.78 down 0. 23 of a point or 0.02 percent, and the Emas was at 9,074.47 down 5. 78 points or 0.06 percent. Turnover decreased to 817.18 million shares valued at 941.37 million ringgit Malaysia (294.82 million U.S. dollars).
Indonesian shares closed lower on Friday, triggered by heavy selling on big capitalized shares.The market index fell 1.8 points or 0.06 percent to 2,924.731 with transaction volume of 4.645 billion shares worth 3.206 trillion rupiah (about 355.7 million U.S. dollars).Trading was quiet on Friday, with only 4.6 billion shares worth Rp 3.2 trillion ($355.2 million) changing hands. Decliners outnumbered gainers 108 to 86.
Cece Ridwanulloh, an analyst at PT Ekokapital Sekuritas, said demand for commodities, especially crude oil, fell after Moody’s Investors Service downgraded Greece’s debt rating on Thursday, prompting a sell-off in local commodity stocks.
Edwin J Sebayang, the head of research of PT Bhakti Securities, said the absence of positive news on the domestic front, coupled with the decline in oil prices, pressured the JCI in morning trading, but longer-term investors took the opportunity to buy shares in companies that had reported stronger-than-expected first-quarter earnings.
The rupiah was little changed, trading at 9,011 to the US dollar as of the stock market’s close, compared with 9,013 on Thursday.
Enrico Tanuwidjaja, a regional economist at OSK-DMG in Singapore, said the central bank was limiting the rupiah’s gains after it touched a 33-month high on Wednesday.
On the JCI, coal miner PT Bumi Resources lost 1.1 percent, while PT Adaro Energy fell 2.2 percent.
PT Aneka Tambang dropped 3 percent.
Crude oil fell as much as 0.4 percent to $83.37 before trading at $83.68 on Friday.
Bucking the trend on Friday were Bimantara group stocks. PT Media Nusantara Citra jumped 12 percent after reporting that its first-quarter net profit more than doubled from a year earlier, while PT Global Mediacom surged 8.9 percent after reporting that its profit more than tripled.
The shares prices in Singapore rose 7.8 points or 0.26 percent on Friday with the benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) closing at 2,988.49 points. The overall volume stood at 1.73 billion shares worth 1.41 billion Singapore dollars (about 1.03 billion U.S. dollars).
Philippine stocks closed 0.21 percent higher on Friday. The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index increased by 6.88 points to 3,244.45. The all-share index went up by 7.06 points, or 0.35 percent, to 2,017.92. The trade volume reached 1.001 billion shares worth 3.80 billion pesos (85.64 million U.S. dollars).
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