SE Asia Stocks-Most down on oil, mixed data; Singapore hits 1-wk low

miércoles 24 de febrero de 2016 02:34 GYT

BANGKOK, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock
markets retreated on Wednesday amid selling in energy shares and
mixed data from the region, with Singapore hitting a one-week
low as better-than-expected growth failed to ease concerns about
the impact of a global slowdown.
    The key Straits Times Index dropped 2 percent to the
lowest since Feb. 17, with 28 out of 30 stocks gauged by the
index falling.
    The city-state's economy grew faster than estimated in the
fourth quarter but a deeper contraction in the key manufacturing
sector and a downgrade to trade growth for this year will keep
pressure on policy makers to step up stimulus. 
    In Kuala Lumpur, shares were moderately down 0.6
percent after the inflation rate in January surged to the
fastest level in nearly two years but was not expected to lead
to any hike of the country's benchmark interest rate.
    Stocks in the Philippines slipped 1.4 percent as
imports in December tumbled nearly 26 percent from a year
earlier. The market will be closed on Thursday for a
    Thai stocks and Indonesia were little
changed, with shares in energy firms such as PTT and
Perusahaan Gas Negara among losers. Vietnam 
climbed 1 percent on gains in banking stocks. 
    Falling oil prices dampened global market strength and risk
appetite, the Bangkok-based Asia Wealth Securities said.
    "Some investors even think global slowdown may be more
significant than expected and falling oil prices could prolong,"
the broker said in a report.
    Investors turned cautious in a weak reporting season. Shares
of Philippines' Metropolitan Bank and Trust, for
instance, dropped 1.6 percent after it posted a 16.3 percent
fall in 2015 net income.
    A survey by business advisory firm PwC showed chief
executives in ASEAN were losing confidence in revenue growth as
a gloomy global economy affected sales in the region.
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 Change at 0608 GMT
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 Singapore          2622.72       2672.07       -1.85
 Kuala Lumpur       1667.73       1677.28       -0.57
 Bangkok            1326.44       1325.79       +0.05
 Jakarta            4644.85       4654.05       -0.20
 Manila             6727.55       6819.34       -1.35
 Ho Chi Minh         567.41        561.28       +1.09
 (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)