SE Asia Stocks - Thai shares trim gains after weak trade data
BANGKOK, June 26 (Reuters) - Thai shares erased most early gains on Friday as investors weighed in the risk of a worse-than-expected drop in imports in May while other markets in Southeast Asia were little changed as uncertainty over Greek debt talks clouded sentiment. The SET index traded 0.1 percent higher at midday, led by a 1.3 percent gain in lender Kasikornbank Pcl but shares of biggest energy firm PTT retreated 0.3 percent after four straight days of gains. Investors were reluctant to increase holdings in risk assets after trade data in May showed imports had their biggest tumble in nearly six years. "Greek debt issue is still a concern but investors also took the trade data as a fresh reason to worry. Weak imports could be a leading indicator for exports in the next period," said senior analyst Pichai Lertsupongkij of Thanachart Securities. The SET is on track for a weekly gain of 2 percent after the 1.1 percent loss last week. In the Philippines, the key index edged up 0.2 percent, a day after the central bank kept its benchmark interest rate steady at 4.0 percent as expected. Singapore was down 0.4 percent after industrial production in May slid 2.3 percent versus a forecast 2.1 percent fall in a Reuters poll. Asian equities fell as Greece failed again to reach an agreement with its creditors and stumbled towards a default, while major currencies like the euro and dollar drifted in narrow range. Southeast Asian markets saw a mixed performance on the week. Singapore and Vietnam were headed for a weekly gain of 1.1 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively. Indonesia was on track for a 1.2 percent drop and Malaysia headed for 0.5 percent fall. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change at 0602 GMT Market Current Prev Close Pct Move Singapore 3337.46 3349.87 -0.37 Kuala Lumpur 1713.45 1716.81 -0.20 Bangkok 1521.15 1519.47 +0.11 Jakarta 4926.97 4920.04 +0.14 Manila 7601.28 7581.91 +0.26 Ho Chi Minh 588.03 587.99 +0.01 (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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