SE Asia Stocks-Most gain; Thai index closes at near 3-week high
June 11 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose for a second session on Thursday with the Thai index closing at a near three-week high, but foreign investors continued to sell risky assets amid speculation over an early rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve. Foreign investors sold a net $65.26 million worth Malaysian shares and $50.61 million worth Indonesian shares. Thailand suffered net foreign outflow of $68.98 million and Manila saw net foreign selling of $3.83 million. The U.S. Fed is expected to raise interest rates sooner than expected as the world's largest economy starts to regain speed, recent positive economic data showed. Thailand's SET index closed 0.7 percent higher to its highest since May 22 led by financials, a day after the country's central bank held policy rates steady as expected, while Singapore rose 0.7 percent to a one-week high. The Philippine index jumped 1.6 percent, rising for a second straight session from a five-month low hit on Tuesday and its best single-day gain since Jan. 23. Vietnam ended up 1.2 percent at a three-month high on news of a potential cut in stock repayment period. The Jakarta Composite Index, however, bucked the trend, closing 0.1 percent lower, led by state-controlled banks after a report that they would halve lending rates for small businesses. "We are still seeing foreign selling pressures despite the strong rebound in the US market last night," said Harry Su, head of research at Jakarta-based broker Bahana Securities. "Sentiment is still weak for the Indonesian market on continued political uncertainties and weak growth due to government infrastructure delays." Shares of PT Bank Negara Indonesia fell 3 percent, PT Bank Mandiri were down 2 percent, and PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia lost 2.6 percent. SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current Prev Close Pct Move Singapore 3347.67 3325.77 +0.66 Kuala Lumpur 1734.76 1735.63 -0.05 Bangkok 1515.19 1504.04 +0.74 Jakarta 4928.81 4933.56 -0.10 Manila 7503.72 7384.27 +1.62 Ho Chi Minh 581.05 574.10 +1.21 Change on year Market Current End 2014 Pct Move Singapore 3347.67 3365.15 -0.52 Kuala Lumpur 1734.76 1761.25 -1.50 Bangkok 1515.19 1497.67 +1.14 Jakarta 4928.81 5226.95 -5.70 Manila 7503.72 7230.57 +3.78 Ho Chi Minh 581.05 545.63 +6.49 ($1 = 3.7450 ringgit) ($1 = 13,316.0000 rupiah) ($1 = 45.1900 Philippine pesos) ($1 = 33.7200 baht) (Reporting by Shihar Aneez in COLOMBO; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)
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