Bursa Malaysia extends gains to open higher

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 17 (Bernama) -- Bursa Malaysia extended yesterday’s gains to open higher today, driven by continued buying interest in selected heavyweights amid cautious sentiment in the regional markets, dealers said.

At 9.18 am, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) rose 4.09 points to 1,522.87 from 1,518.78 at Tuesday's close.

The benchmark index opened 0.77 of a point higher at 1,519.55.

On the broader market, gainers led decliners 193 to 167, while 257 counters were unchanged, 1,662 untraded and six others suspended.

Turnover stood at 324.99 million units worth RM163.13 million.

Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd said the FBM KLCI yesterday staged a strong breakout, mainly fuelled by buying interest in the telecommunication heavyweights, coupled with the healthy inflow of foreign funds -- five-day net foreign buying stood at RM719.8 million.

“While the global markets may keep an eye on UK’s inflation to gauge the global recession risk, we believe the local bourse should remained positive in the upcoming earnings season as the international border was uplifted in April.

“Commodities wise, both the crude oil and crude palm oil (CPO) trended lower, with the former trading around US$92 per barrel and the latter hovering slightly above RM4,100 per tonne,” it said in a note today.

Among the heavyweights, Maybank added 1.0 sen to RM8.98, Public Bank advanced 2.0 sen to RM4.67, Petronas Chemicals gained 9.0 sen to RM8.84 while IHH Healthcare and CIMB were flat at RM6.49 and RM5.45, respectively.

Of the actives, Hartalega slipped 11 sen to RM1.66, Serba Dinamik eased half-a-sen to 9.0 sen while TWL Holdings and Borneo Oil were flat at 6.0 sen and 2.5 sen respectively.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index improved 19.95 points to 10,769.48, the FBMT 100 Index perked up 19.41 points to 10,517.57, the FBM Emas Shariah Index went up 22.65 points to 10,924.56, the FBM 70 fell 12.09 points to 12,768.74, while the FBM ACE increased 1.16 points to 4,969.44.

The Financial Services Index rose 21.02 points to 16,832.36, the Plantation Index bagged 29.28 points to 7,288, the Energy Index slipped 3.35 points to 654.16, and the Industrial Products and Services Index earned 0.84 of-a-point to 184.72.