SE Asia Stocks-Thai stocks fall, political uncertainty lingers
BANGKOK, March 21 (Reuters) - Thai stocks fell for a fourth session on Friday as investors stayed on the defensive due to domestic political uncertainty, although the country's Constitutional Court nullified a Feb. 2 general election. The benchmark SET index was down 0.07 percent, finishing the week 0.9 percent lower after three consecutive weeks of gains. The biggest loser was Glow Energy, which shed 8.1 percent. Traders said it was among stocks hit by short selling this week. The court ruling was in line with expectations but the market weakness reflected a risk and possible delay of the new election, a trader at broker Kasikorn Securities said. The court did not mention a new election date but election commission chairman Supachai Somcharoen told reporters after the court ruling that if the political situation is stable enough it would take a minimum of three months to organise the election. Other Southeast Asian stock markets rebounded from the previous session's losses after Wall Street shook off concerns about Federal Reserve policy. Jakarta's Composite Index recouped earlier losses, helped by selective buying in dividend yielding stocks, with top gainers including shares of Perusahaan Gas Negara. It dropped 3.7 percent on the week, Southeast Asia's worst performer. In Singapore, the stock index was up 0.5 percent, erasing most of its losses on the week. Property shares such as City Developments led gainers, rebounding after selloffs in property shares early in the week. Late selling sent Philippine shares 1.2 percent lower, the region's worst performer on the day. Manila bourse said foreign investors were net sellers of stocks worth of 266.7 million peso ($5.9 million). For Asian Companies click; For South East Asia Hot Stock reports, click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current Prev Close Pct Move TR SE Asia Index* 399.97 399.36 +0.15 Singapore 3073.39 3057.20 +0.53 Kuala Lumpur 1820.48 1818.17 +0.13 Bangkok 1360.50 1361.47 -0.07 Jakarta 4700.21 4698.97 +0.03 Manila 6339.26 6417.35 -1.22 Ho Chi Minh 601.75 600.26 +0.25 Change on year Market Current End 2013 Pct Move TR SE Asia Index* 399.97 388.37 +2.99 Singapore 3073.39 3167.43 -2.97 Kuala Lumpur 1820.48 1866.96 -2.49 Bangkok 1360.50 1298.71 +4.76 Jakarta 4700.21 4274.18 +9.97 Manila 6339.26 5889.83 +7.63 Ho Chi Minh 601.75 504.63 +19.25 * The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. ($1 = 45.0900 Philippine Pesos) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Additional reporting by Amy Sawitta Lefevre; Editing by Anand Basu)
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