SE Asia Stocks -Indonesia hits over 4-wk closing low; others mixed
March 25 (Reuters) - Indonesian shares ended at their lowest in more than four weeks on Wednesday as foreign investors sold risky assets amid a weakening rupiah, while other Southeast Asian markets closed mixed after Chinese factory activity came in weaker than expected. Jakarta's composite index fell 0.8 percent to its lowest close since Feb. 23, Thomson Reuters data showed. Foreign investors sold a net $30.61 million worth shares. The rupiah's weakness against the U.S. dollar is still a concern, said Andri Zakarias, an analyst with BNI Securities, adding that foreign selling pressure was still seen in the stock market. The rupiah was down 0.64 percent on Wednesday, after having risen to its highest in more than two weeks on Tuesday, partly as uncertainty over the timing of U.S. interest rate hikes lifted most emerging Asian currencies. Activity in China's factory sector slid to an 11-month low in March as new orders shrank, a private survey showed, indicating the economy may need more policy stimulus. Vietnam's benchmark VN Index fell 1.15 percent to close at its lowest since Feb. 3, led by a slump in PetroVietNam Gas, the country's biggest listed firm by market value. In Manila, the main stock index recovered from early losses and closed 0.1 percent up, but the gains were capped by investor concerns over the monetary policy meeting on Thursday. "Investors are taking precautions before the monetary policy meeting tomorrow and we also expect the trend to continue due to window dressing during the quarterly-end," said Luis Limlingan, head of sales at Manila-based Regina Capital. "There are also concerns over the U.S. Fed rate hike timing." Foreign investors sold a net $23.58 million worth shares, bourse data showed. In Bangkok, the SET index surrendered its early gains to end 0.1 percent weaker at its lowest close since Jan. 7. Singapore's key index ended 0.2 percent firmer, while Malaysia closed 0.3 percent up with a $51.41 million net foreign inflow, bourse 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 Singapore 3419.02 3413.26 +0.17 Kuala Lumpur 1819.10 1814.04 +0.28 Bangkok 1512.80 1514.45 -0.11 Jakarta 5405.49 5447.65 -0.77 Manila 7836.34 7828.94 +0.09 Ho Chi Minh 560.93 567.43 -1.15 Change on year Market Current End 2014 Pct Move Singapore 3419.02 3365.15 +1.60 Kuala Lumpur 1819.10 1761.25 +3.26 Bangkok 1512.80 1497.67 +1.01 Jakarta 5405.49 5226.95 +3.42 Manila 7836.34 7230.57 +8.38 Ho Chi Minh 560.93 545.63 +2.80 ($1 = 12,982.0000 rupiah) ($1 = 3.6645 ringgit) ($1 = 44.8000 Philippine pesos) (Reporting by Shihar Aneez in COLOMBO and Viparat Jantraprap in Bangkok; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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