ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
ASEAN Markets Under Pressure
Asean markets were hammered again today, Jakarta and Bangkok can expect more of that over the next few weeks as they have their own internal issues.
But still there are great bargains to be had, Bank Mandiri, Keppel Corp, Aboitiz Equity, Astra Agro Lestari, Sembcorp Marine, PTTEP are among my best buys.
Overnight in the USA
At the close, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 10.60 points, or 0.09 percent, at 12,229.29. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 0.99 points, or 0.07 percent, at 1321.87. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 1.38 points, or 0.05 percent at 2790.45.
The Dow's decline came despite positive news on jobs. The Labor Department said 383,000 people applied for unemployment benefits for the first time last week, the lowest level in nearly three years. Economists say applications would need to fall to 375,000 or below on a consistent basis before the unemployment rate will decline.
In Jakarta the index plummeted 42.46 points or 1.23 percent to finish at 3,417.47 after trading between 3,384.88 and 3,458.25. Volume was 4.21 billion shares worth 4.48 trillion rupiah. There were 183 decliners and 51 gainers.
Among the decliners, Astra Agro Lestari shed 2.48 percent, while Bumi Resources lost 2.75 percent, Bank Central Asia retreated 1.67 percent, Bank Mandiri plunged 4.2 percent and Bank Rakyat Indonesia declined 4.2 percent.
The Indonesian stock market has finished lower now in three straight trading days,plummeting more than 100 points or 2.7 percent along the way. The Jakarta Composite Index finished just below the 3,420-point plateau, and now investors are bracing for further damage when the market opens on Thursday.
Singapore's tourism receipts for 2010 was estimated at S$18.8 billion, exceeding the year's forecast range of between S$17.5 billion to S$18.5 billion.
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) said today all components of tourism receipts grew by double-digits last year, with shopping, sightseeing and entertainment and accommodation making up 61 percent of it.
The high growth of 49 percent tourism receipts was attributed to higher per capita spending and strong international visitor arrivals due to the positive economic sentiment, and the opening of two integrated resorts, the Resort World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands Singapore, last year, STB said in a statement.
It said international visitor arrivals to Singapore reached 11.6 million last year, registering a year-on-year increase of 20 percent.
STB also said Singapore's top five international visitor-generating markets last year were Indonesia (2,305,000), China (1,171,000), Australia (1,037,000), Malaysia(880,000) and India (829,000).
These five markets accounted for 53 percent of total international visitor arrivals for 2010.
In 2010, Malaysia (+36 per cent), Thailand (+35 per cent), South Korea (+33 percent), Hong Kong (+32 per cent), and Indonesia (+32 per cent) registered the highest growth rates among the top 15 markets.
The STB also said, gazetted hotel revenue, was estimated at S$1.9 billion in 2010,up by 21.8 percent against 2009.
Singapore share prices ended 1.5% lower on Thursday, logging their fourth straight decline this week, amid regional market weakness.
The blue-chip Straits Times Index (STI) closed down 47.17 points at 3,103.39, taking this week's losses to 2.8%. Losses on European markets also put pressure on Singapore shares in afternoon trade.
Overall volume traded was 1.46 billion shares worth S$2.05 billion. Losers outnumbered gainers 408 to 120.
Worries about Asian central banks' tightening monetary policy to tame accelerating inflation have hurt sentiment in the region and sparked some interest in the US market. On the Singapore Exchange, Singapore Telecommunications fell 1.3 percent to S$3.05 despite better-than-expected earnings, weighed down by negative market sentiment.
Sembcorp Marine lost 4.5 percent to S$5.10 after analysts said the prospect of new contracts has already been factored into the share prices of rig builders.
Meanwhile, Keppel Corp closed 2.2% lower at S$11.30.
Among the banks, UOB dived 2.2% to S$18.82, DBS slumped 1.1% to S$14.82 and OCBC dropped 0.5 percent to S$9.59.
Among the gainers, City Developments added 0.9% to S$11.00 while CapitaMall Trust was 0.5 higher at S$1.88.
In Manila, Philippine Stock Exchange index lost 105.06 points to finish at 3,738.31 on heavy foreign selling. The index broke a key psychological support at 3,800.
All the counters fell sharply but the interest rate-sensitive property sector took the worst beating, falling by 4.4 percent.
The holding firm counter, a proxy to expectations on how the domestic economy will fare, also dropped by 2.9 percent.
The industrial, financial, services and mining/oil counters likewise tumbled by 2.43 percent, 2.34 percent, 1.91 percent and 1.63 percent, respectively.
There were over six decliners for every single gainer. Value turnover was heavy at P6.35 billion.
Investors dumped shares of Aboitiz Equity, PLDT, Metrobank, Alliance Global, SM Investments, Ayala Corp., Megaworld, San Miguel Corp., Banco de Oro, Ayala Land,Cebu Air, Aboitiz Power, Jollibee, Meralco, EDC, Univeral Robina, SM Prime Holdings,Semirara Mining and Nickel Asia.
But with the sharp decline, some dealers said it may be a good opportunity to accumulate oversold stocks.
In Kuala Lumpur the index dropped 32.08 points or 2.09% on Thursday as Asia markets had a further decline from China's interest rate hike and unfavorable U.S.unemployment rate statement.
Most Active include IRIS, SAAG, KBUNAI, TALAM, HEXAGON-WA, HWGB, IRIS-WB, KUB,IGB-CD and MPHB. Trading volume increased to 2225.20 mil shares worth RM3127.80 million as compared to Wednesday’s 2196.53 million shares worth RM2660.29 mil.
The Winners were PBBANK (+15 sen to RM13.06), MAYBANK (+22 sen to RM8.56), IOICORP (+22 sen to RM5.56), CIMB (+19 sen to RM8.18) and AXIATA (+14 sen to RM4.99).
The Losers were DIGI (-12 sen to RM25.74), TM (unchanged at RM3.88), MAXIS (unchanged at RM5.46), KLK (-2 sen to RM22.08) and HLBANK (-2 sen to RM9.23). Market breadth was negative with 160 gainers as compared to 750 losers.
The Finance Index fell 2.31 percent to 13637.01 points, the Properties Index dropped 0.77 percent to 1125.19 points and the Plantation Index down 1.85 percent to 7890.55 points. The market traded within a range of 23.40 points between an intra-day high of 1527.39 and a low of 1503.99 during the session.
The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) composite index went down 20.80 points or 2.14 percent to close at 949.09 points at the end of trading session on Thursday afternoon. The trade value was 32.61 billion baht.
Top five most active values were as follows;
BANPU closed at 694.00 baht down 28.00 baht (3.88%)
PTT closed at 320.00 baht, down 10.00 baht (3.03%)
PTTEP closed at 164.00 baht, down 8.00 baht (4.65%)
KBANK closed at 103.50 baht, down 4.50 baht (4.17%)
TMB closed at 2.22 baht, up 0.06 baht (2.78%)