SE Asia Stocks-Philippines leads regional gains on inflows
BANGKOK, March 18 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose, in line with Asia on Friday as foreign investors bought shares, bringing key indexes in the Philippines and Malaysia to a near five-month high. The Federal Reserve's cautious stance on further interest rate increases continued to lift risk appetite in Asia. Stocks in the Philippines continued their outperformances, with the key index climbing 1.3 percent to its highest close since Oct. 27, 2015. It notched up 2.9 percent gain on the week, Southeast Asia's best performer. Malaysia advanced 0.8 percent to its highest close since Oct. 19, 2015, with a weekly increase of 1.2 percent. Foreign inflows to Philippine shares continued for a third straight week while the inflows to Malaysia came into a fifth week, stock exchange data showed. The Philippines received inflows worth a net 4.4 billion peso ($95 million), while Malaysia attracted inflows worth a net 1.5 billion ringgit ($371 million). Singapore posted a weekly gain of 2.8 percent, the second-best, followed by Indonesia's 1.5 percent increase. Thailand and Vietnam underperformed on the week, down 0.8 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively. Many markets will have a holiday-shortened trading week next week, with the Philippines closed for a public holiday on Thursday and Friday. Singapore and Indonesia will be shut on Friday. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change on the day Market Current previous close Pct Move Singapore 2906.8 2880.17 0.92 Bangkok 1382.96 1380.2 0.20 Manila 7306.74 7210.9 1.33 Jakarta 4885.708 4885.688 0.00 Kuala Lumpur 1716.34 1703.19 0.77 Ho Chi Minh 575.82 579.26 -0.59 Change so far this year Market Current End prev yr Pct Move Singapore 2906.8 2882.73 0.83 Bangkok 1382.96 1288.02 7.37 Manila 7306.74 6952.08 5.10 Jakarta 4885.708 4593.008 6.37 Kuala Lumpur 1716.34 1692.51 1.41 Ho Chi Minh 575.82 579.03 -0.55 ($1 = 46.3750 Philippine pesos) ($1 = 4.0465 ringgit) (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Anand Basu)
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