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By Zarul Effendi Razali
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 -- Bursa Malaysia ended higher in volatile trading today, boosted by continuous buying support in selected heavyweights led by Petronas Chemicals and Maybank, dealers said.
The two counters contributed a combined 4.04 points to the gains in the barometer index, the dealers said.
At 5 pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) rose 6.31 points or 0.4 per cent to 1,569.51 from 1,563.20 at Wednesday’s close.
The index opened 1.24 points lower at 1,561.96 and fluctuated between 1,560.29 and 1,570.14 throughout the trading session.
The overall market breadth, however, was negative with decliners beating advancers 642 to 343, while 398 counters were unchanged, 884 untraded and 40 others suspended.
Total turnover rose to 3.46 billion units worth RM2.14 billion versus 3.37 billion units valued at RM1.91 billion yesterday.
Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd vice-president of equity research Thong Pak Leng said the FBM KLCI closed higher as buying interest continued on selected heavyweights such as oil and gas, plantation and banks during the final hour of trading.
“Meanwhile, key regional indices trended broadly lower due to expectations that the US Federal Reserve (Fed) will hike interest rates as early as March 2022,” he told Bernama today.
Japan's Nikkei 225 slipped 0.96 per cent to 28,489.13, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index went up 0.11 per cent to 24,429.77, Singapore’s Straits Times Index added 0.08 per cent to 3,257.62 and South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.35 per cent to 2,962.09.
On the domestic front, Thong said the FBM KLCI is attempting to break the 1,570 technical resistance.
“If the resistance is broken, we may see the index heading towards the 1,600 mark. Overall, we remain cautiously optimistic and reckon buying activities to continue, while on the other hand, we are wary over external factors given the increasing regional market volatility amid news on the interest rate hike by the Fed in the US.
“As such, we expect the FBM KLCI to trend within the range of 1.565-1,575 towards the weekend,” he added.
Among heavyweights, Maybank gained 9.0 sen to RM8.50, Petronas Chemicals jumped 15 sen to RM9.15, CIMB and TNB improved 3.0 sen each to RM5.59 and RM9.10 respectively, while Public Bank slipped 1.0 sen to RM4.24.
Of the actives, Pegasus Heights and VSolar were flat at 1.0 sen and 1.5 sen respectively, while AHB Holdings shed 8.0 sen to 20 sen and MQ Technology eased half-a-sen to 8.0 sen.
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