SE Asia Stocks -Thai shares rebound; Indonesia at 11-month highs
BANGKOK, May 14 (Reuters) - Thai shares rose on Wednesday on bargain-hunting after five sessions of losses while stocks in Indonesia jumped to their highest in more than 11 months after Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo boosted his chances in the July presidential election. Investors were lured by hopes of a solution to Thailand's political impasse and the recent selloffs in risk assets that pulled valuations of large caps to a relatively low level. The Thai SET index was up 0.8 percent, recovering some of the 3.3 percent loss since May 2. Gainers included Kasikornbank Pcl which was among the beaten-down stocks last week in the wake of foreign investor-led selling. Shares of 50 large caps traded at 13.95 times price-to-earnings compared with Indonesia's 16.57 times and the Philippines' 20.35 times, Thomson Reuters data showed. "Domestic events like the first quarter 2014 earnings and the first quarter 2014 GDP are widely forecasted to be weak, so politics will be the only focal point," strategists at broker KGI Securities wrote in a report. Thailand's Senate met on Tuesday to try to find a solution to protracted political turmoil, with both sides putting pressure on the only legislative assembly still functioning in the polarised country. Jakarta's composite index (JCI) was up 0.9 percent at 4,964.79, the highest since June 7. The rally boosted its year-to-date gain to 16.2 percent, Asia's second-best performer after the Philippine index. Foreign investors have bought Indonesian shares a net 35 trillion rupiah ($3.03 billion) so far this year after they offloaded about 21 trillion rupiah in full year 2013. The market rally on Wednesday came after popular Joko "Jokowi" secured the support of the country's second-largest political party. Technically, the index formed an overbought territory and could trigger profit-taking ahead of a market holiday on Thursday, said Trimegah Securities. JCI's 14-day Relative Strength Index was 68.3 versus an overbought line of 70 or above. Other markets in Southeast Asia gained support from the positive sentiment in Asia, as a weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales report on Tuesday did little to change views the economy was poised for faster growth this quarter. In Manila, shares trimmed early gains thanks to weaknesses in the country's second-biggest company by market value, SM Investments Corp, which reported a 16 percent fall in first-quarter net income. For Asian Companies click; For South East Asia Hot Stock reports, click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change at 0431 GMT Market Current Prev Close Pct Move TR SE Asia Index* 421.92 417.43 +1.08 Singapore 3253.86 3222.43 +0.98 Kuala Lumpur 1874.91 1866.08 +0.47 Bangkok 1385.59 1375.14 +0.76 Jakarta 4964.79 4921.39 +0.88 Manila 6895.90 6852.81 +0.63 Ho Chi Minh 521.01 513.91 +1.38 * 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 = 11536.5000 Indonesian Rupiahs) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Additional reporting by Eveline Danubrata in JAKARTA; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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