KUALA LUMPUR (March 30): Bursa Malaysia was mixed at midday as profit-taking activities among the blue chips — mainly banking and energy stocks after their recent advance — continued to drag the barometer index lower.
At 12.30pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) fell 2.87 points to 1,417.48 from Wednesday's close of 1,420.35.
The main index opened 2.54 points lower at 1,417.81 and moved between 1,415.10 and 1,418.85 throughout the morning trading session.
Market breadth, however, was positive as gainers beat decliners at 384 to 343, while 357 counters were unchanged, 1,207 untraded and 75 others suspended.
Turnover stood at 1.84 billion units worth RM724.77 million.
The market’s performance was also in sync with the mixed regional bourses following their recent gains due to easing banking sector worries.
The Nikkei Index fell 0.81% to 27,658.39, and the Hang Seng Index dropped 0.69% to 20,053.85, while the Kospi Composite Index gained 0.46% to 2,455.11.
Meanwhile, oil prices declined on Wednesday after a two-day winning streak that sent both crude benchmarks to the highest levels in more than two weeks.
Back home, a trader said the main index may recoup some losses before the closing bell as some investors may look for bargains in beaten-down counters.
Among the heavyweights, IHH Healthcare Bhd lost four sen to RM5.72, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd was down by five sen to RM5.26, and Sime Darby Bhd fell five sen to RM2.15.
Public Bank Bhd fell one sen to RM3.95, and RHB Bank Bhd slipped two sen to RM5.52.
As for the actives, BSL Corporation Bhd dropped half-a-sen to two sen, and Bintai Kinden Corp Bhd trimmed two sen to four sen, while YBS International Bhd added three sen to 73 sen.
On the index board, the FBM Emas Index eased 0.92 of-a-point to 10,387.1, and the FBMT 100 Index declined 0.94 of-a-point to 10,082.43, while the FBM Emas Shariah Index ticked up nine points to 10,708.08, the FBM 70 Index bagged 79.42 points to 13,489.73, and the FBM ACE Index rose 10.89 points to 5,220.85.
Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index declined 27.32 points to 15,661.86, and the Energy Index shed 5.51 points to 826.74, while the Industrial Products and Services Index inched up 1.78 points to 170.55, and the Plantation Index rose 39.14 points to 6,719.71.