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KUALA LUMPUR, April 23 — Bursa Malaysia ended the week modestly higher, driven by steady gains in heavyweights led by rubber glove and industrial products counters as the broader market breadth also turned positive.
At 5pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) increased 0.70 of-a-point to 1,608.43 compared to Thursday’s close of 1,607.73.
The market bellwether opened 0.45 of-a-point lower at 1,607.28 and moved between 1,605.44 and 1,610.81 throughout the day.
Overall market breadth turned positive at the last leg of trading, as gainers surpassed losers by 574 versus 478, while 454 counters were unchanged, 687 untraded and 17 suspended.
Total volume decreased to 6.55 billion shares worth RM4.19 billion from 7.90 billion shares worth RM4.98 billion on Thursday.
Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd economist Adam Mohamed Rahim said glove counters continued to be supported by the rise in COVID-19 cases in Malaysia and overseas.
“Overall, market sentiment was supported by the rally in China stocks following President Xi Jinping’s renewed green pledge which bolstered energy stocks, while a flare-up of pandemic cases in Asian countries helped to support healthcare shares.
“In addition, the move by the European Central Bank to maintain stimulus, somehow, made investors less concerned about the impact of a possible hike in US capital gains taxes,” he told Bernama.
Yesterday, US President Joe Biden proposed to double the capital gains tax for those earning US$1.0 million and above.
As a result, the US stock markets retreated Thursday with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite losing 0.94 per cent each to 33,815.90 and 13,818.41 respectively, while the S&P 500 declined 0.92 per cent to 4,134.98.