Bursa Malaysia closes higher fueeled by bargain hunting

NST Fri, Mar 29, 2024 05:39pm - 2 months View Original

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia extended its gains to close higher for the day as bargain hunting activities emerged following a few lacklustre trading sessions earlier.

At 5pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) gained 5.47 points to 1,536.07 from Wednesday's close of 1,530.60. 

The benchmark index opened 1.51 points higher at 1,532.11 and moved between 1,532.03 and 1,542.00 throughout the day.  

On the broader market, gainers outpaced losers 516 to 469, while 502 counters were unchanged, 833 untraded, and 55 others suspended.

Turnover narrowed to 3.06 billion units worth RM2.59 billion from 3.75 billion units worth RM3.10 billion on Wednesday.

Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd equity research vice president Thong Pak Leng said key regional indices were in positive territory after Wall Street stocks wrapped up the first quarter on a positive note. 

On the domestic front, Thong said the firm is staying cautious despite some improvement in the market sentiment, recognising that investors' expectations fluctuate over time. 

"We expect the benchmark index to remain its sideways pattern for the time being until more clarity emerges regarding the anticipated US interest rate cut," he told the Business Times. 

Meanwhile, Thong said the FBM KLCI remained in the consolidation phase over the past two weeks. 

Despite the ongoing deeper consolidation, he said the index consistently remained above the 50-day Exponential Moving Averages (EMA). 

"As such, we maintain our view that the benchmark index is still consolidating with a slight positive bias, with expectations of it hovering around the 20-day EMA. 

"We believe this consolidation to continue for a while longer, with support levels observed at the range of 1,525-1,531, followed by critical support at 1,520 and then 1,508. 

"Hence, we anticipate the FBM KLCI to trend within the range of 1,527-1,557 next week," he said. 

Among other heavyweights, Malayan Banking Bhd bagged four sen to RM9.69, Public Bank Bhd rose one sen to RM4.22, IHH Healthcare Bhd perked up two sen to RM6.05 while Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd slid eight sen to RM6.71.

As for the actives, Hong Seng Consolidated Bhd and Lambo Group were flat at 1.0 sen and 3.0 sen, respectively, MMAG Holdings Bhd expanded 1.5 sen to 19.0 sen, Velesto Energy Bhd edged up half-a-sen to 30 sen, while Ingenieur Gudang slipped one sen to 15.0 sen.

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