SE Asia Stocks - Most higher; Malaysia keeps rates steady
BANGKOK, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian markets gained on Thursday, with banking shares outperforming in Malaysia before the central bank rate decision, while stocks in Indonesia and Thailand closed at their highest in more than a week. Malaysia's central bank kept its key interest rate unchanged at 3.25 percent on Thursday, holding off from a second tightening in less than three months after recent signs of a slowdown in exports and credit growth. The rate decision came after the market closed. Kuala Lumpur's composite index ended a tad higher, with shares of Public Bank and Maybank rising in strong volume. Local institutions and domestic retail investors bought Malaysian stocks worth a net 129.6 million ringgit ($40.12 million) and 11.5 million ringgit, respectively, while foreign investors were net sellers, stock exchange data showed. Jakarta's composite index edged up 0.4 percent while the Thai index closed up 0.9 percent, both hitting their highest closing levels since Sept. 8. 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 Singapore 3297.29 3296.48 +0.02 Kuala Lumpur 1845.32 1843.78 +0.08 Bangkok 1584.23 1570.64 +0.87 Jakarta 5208.14 5188.18 +0.38 Manila 7287.29 7231.84 +0.77 Ho Chi Minh 615.80 625.66 -1.58 Change on year Market Current End 2013 Pct Move Singapore 3297.29 3167.43 +4.10 Kuala Lumpur 1845.32 1866.96 -1.16 Bangkok 1584.23 1298.71 +21.98 Jakarta 5208.14 4274.18 +21.85 Manila 7287.29 5889.83 +23.73 Ho Chi Minh 615.80 504.63 +22.03 (1 US dollar = 3.2300 Malaysian ringgit) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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