Thin trading expected on Bursa Malaysia in the fifth week of April. — Bernama pic
Thin trading expected on Bursa Malaysia in the fifth week of April. — Bernama pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 24 — Bursa Malaysia is expected to experience thin trading in the holiday-shortened week ahead.

The stock market will be closed on Thursday next week for the Nuzul Quran public holiday.

Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd economist Adam Mohamed Rahim expects many traders will opt for a long holiday and be away until Monday.

“We may see a decline in trading activities as many investors would take Friday off to have a long weekend.

“Therefore, we do not expect the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) to experience any large movements and may trade within the range of 1,600 to 1,610 points,” he told Bernama.

On the global front, investors will be focusing on the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting next week.

Adam expects the US Federal Reserve to keep monetary policy and policy signals unchanged as the upcoming meeting is one of the interim meetings without updated forecasts and dot plots.

“As such, investors are likely to see the Fed moving in a more hawkish direction later this year based on recent positive US economic data,” he said, adding that Covid-19 developments will also be closely monitored.

In addition, the Bank of Japan monetary policy meeting is scheduled for April 26-27.

Amid the rising Covid-19 cases in Japan, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is set to announce a targeted state of emergency for Tokyo, Osaka, and two other prefectures.

Domestically, new Covid-19 infections in Malaysia remains above the 2,800-mark for the second consecutive day yesterday as 2,847 cases were reported, bringing the cumulative total to 387,535. 

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For the week just ended, the local bourse was mostly higher with continued demand for glove, oil and gas and telecommunications counters.

The market opened weaker on Monday amid profit-taking, and the momentum turned on Tuesday on bargain-hunting as investors digested Bank Indonesia’s move to trim 2020 gross domestic product forecast and India’s daily record Covid-19 death toll. 

Bursa, however, retreated the next day following worries over the economic consequences of Covid-19 and uncertainty surrounding oil demand.

On Thursday and onward, the domestic bourse improved, aided by continued interest for glove counters.

On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the benchmark FBM KLCI rose 0.05 of-a-point to 1,608.43 from 1,608.38 registered last Friday. 

On the index board, FBM Emas was 10.32 points easier at 11,840.46, the FBMT 100 decreased 11.51 points to 11,492.06, and FBM 70 fell 61.28 points to 15,607.90.

The FBM ACE rose 88.70 points to 8,686.05, and FBM Emas Shariah increased 32.35 points to 13,307.69.

Sector-wise, the Plantation Index reduced 37.36 points to 6,842.06, the Financial Services Index went down 100.93 points to 14,974.23 and the Industrial Products and Services Index was 0.69 of-a-point lower at 196.14.

The Healthcare Index surged 109.70 points to 3,280.82, the Energy Index eased 22.06 points to 900.61 and the Technology Index was unchanged at 87.52

Turnover increased to 38.76 billion units worth RM21.75 billion from 31.31 billion units worth RM18.53 billion in the previous week.

Main Market volume edgd up to 22.80 billion shares worth RM16.47 billion from 18.76 billion shares worth RM14.47 billion last week.

Warrants volume improved slightly to 2.03 billion units worth RM237.14 million from 2.0 billion units worth RM272.89 million previously. 

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The ACE Market volume expanded to 14.83 billion shares worth RM5.05 billion from 10.54 billion shares worth RM3.79 billion the week earlier. — Bernama



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