KLCI extends losses as world economic growth concerns mount

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 13): The FBM KLCI extended losses as global markets declined on world economic growth concerns. Asian markets had today taken the cue from US equity losses last Friday.

Reuters reported that declines in Asian markets came after US stocks skidded 1.2% on Friday and Wall Street's fear gauge, the CBOE Volatility Index, jumped to a near two-year high.

Today, Malaysia's KLCI fell 1.24 points or 0.1% to 1,807.64 at 9am on losses in stocks like UMW Holdings Bhd and Public Bank Bhd. Last Friday, the KLCI fell 20.85 points or 1.14% to finish at 1,808.88.

Today, analysts said while the KLCI was ripe for a technical rebound, world economic growth concerns might still have an upper hand in dictating the direction of the Malaysian stock market.

"Technically, KLCI had retraced 4.6% from all-time high and rebound is imminent (reflected by grossly oversold daily and weekly oscillators) though may not be smooth given gyration in overseas markets.

"Thus, we are advocating investors to start bargain hunting for fundamentally strong stocks," Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd analyst Nick Foo Mun Pang wrote in a note today.

Across Bursa Malaysia, some 35 million shares worth RM11 million changed hands. There were 40 gainers versus 256 decliners.

At 9.16am, the KLCI fell further to 1,805.96 points. Bursa Malaysia's top gainer was Malaysia Building Society Bhd while leading decliners included UMW and Public Bank.

The most-active stock was Nexgram Holdings Bhd.

Asian stock markets fell. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.64% while South Korea's Kospi declined 1.08%.

Japan markets are closed for a holiday today.

Reuters reported that Asian stocks got off to shaky start on Monday in step with a steep decline on Wall Street as worries about global economic growth sapped confidence, keeping crude oil prices stuck near four-year lows.