SE Asia Stocks - Most higher; Philippines touches record high
BANGKOK, Jan 9 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets mostly rose on Friday amid active buying in large-caps and financial shares, with the Philippine index climbing to an intraday record peak and the Thai benchmark extending gains to a more than two-week high. Asian stocks were up on upbeat expectations for the closely watched U.S. jobs data, while the euro continued to flirt with fresh nine-year lows against the dollar. The Philippine's composite index rallied for a tenth session, touching an intraday record high of 7,446.66. It was up almost 3 percent on the week, and was among the region's outperformers. Metropolitan Bank & Trust rose 1.6 percent, following up on its surge on Thursday due to foreign-led buying, exchange data showed. In Bangkok, the SET index was up 0.4 percent on the day and about 2 percent on the week. Brokers cited a positive global backdrop. "As most investors are waiting for tonight's U.S. unemployment rate, the SET Index is expected to move in a range of 1,515-1,530 points. The movement of the banking and ICT sectors will reflect foreign capital direction," strategists at broker Maybank Kim Eng Securities said in a report. Telecoms firm True Corp gained 4.4 percent, while Kasikornbank was 0.4 percent higher. Foreign investors bought Thai shares worth a net 1.2 billion baht ($36.5 million) on Thursday, their first net purchases in five sessions, in part due to short-covering, according to brokers. Vietnam's benchmark VN Index jumped nearly 3 percent, taking its gains on the week to 3.7 percent, led by banking stocks and PetroVietNam Gas. It was among the top performers in the region. Palm plantation stocks such as Noble Group and IOI Corp underperformed in Singapore and Malaysia as Malaysian palm oil futures dipped for the first time in four days on Friday. Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia are on track for modest losses on the week. For Asian Companies click; For South East Asia Hot Stock reports, click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change at 0722 GMT Market Current Prev Close Pct Move Singapore 3341.24 3345.11 -0.12 Kuala Lumpur 1730.62 1728.06 +0.16 Bangkok 1528.02 1521.62 +0.42 Jakarta 5236.25 5211.83 +0.47 Manila 7402.72 7367.63 +0.48 Ho Chi Minh 569.88 553.47 +2.96 ($1 = 32.8700 baht) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)
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