SE Asia Stocks-Thai shares pare losses despite political woes
BANGKOK, May 7 (Reuters) - Thai shares posted modest losses on Wednesday after a court ruled Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra would have to step down but many other ministers could remain in office while stocks in Indonesia rebounded ahead of a central bank policy meeting. The SET index ended the day down 0.1 percent, paring much of its losses from before the court verdict on worries Thailand could face a political vacuum if the entire government was forced out. The constitutional court found Yingluck guilty of violating the constitution on Wednesday and said she had to step down, throwing the country into further political turmoil. The baht edged up after the Yingluck verdict as most emerging Asian currencies gained. Analysts said investors were cautious about Thai financial markets as there was no sign of political stabilisation. Losses were led by large caps such as Advanced Info Service and PTT Exploration and Production while low valuations in shares of growth firms lured bargain hunters, including retailer CP All which rebounded almost 2 percent. Broker Nomura Pattanasin's analyst Koraphat Vorachet expects market weakness, with near-term support levels for the SET index seen at 1,380, then 1,361. "Political risks overall are higher after the court verdict. Stock market investors may need to see new government before adding on to risk positions, and it's still uncertain if the election will go as planned in July," he said. Indonesian shares gained 0.6 percent as investors bought banking shares such as Bank Rakyat Indonesia amid expectations the central bank would keep interest rates unchanged at its meeting on Thursday. Malaysia ended flat while the Philippines closed near its intraday low amid domestic-led selling. Foreign investors bought Malaysian shares worth a net 34.6 million ringgit ($10.63 million) and Philippine and Indonesian stocks worth a net 699 million peso ($15.77 million) and 339.8 billion rupiah ($29.50 million), respectively, stock exchange and Thomson Reuters data showed. 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* 418.31 418.92 -0.15 Singapore 3236.43 3245.56 -0.28 Kuala Lumpur 1860.43 1860.43 0.00 Bangkok 1402.61 1404.01 -0.10 Jakarta 4862.07 4834.47 +0.57 Manila 6748.51 6765.93 -0.26 Ho Chi Minh 559.97 555.11 +0.88 Change on year Market Current End 2013 Pct Move TR SE Asia Index* 418.31 388.37 +7.71 Singapore 3236.43 3167.43 +2.18 Kuala Lumpur 1860.43 1866.96 -0.35 Bangkok 1402.61 1298.71 +8.00 Jakarta 4862.07 4274.18 +13.75 Manila 6748.51 5889.83 +14.58 Ho Chi Minh 559.97 504.63 +10.97 * 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 = 3.2535 Malaysian Ringgits) ($1 = 44.3200 Philippine Pesos) ($1 = 11517.0000 Indonesian Rupiahs) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Additional reporting by Jongwoo Chen in SINGAPORE; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)
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