SE Asia Stocks-Most indexes end weaker on global growth concerns
May 5 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets fell on Thursday, led by the Philippines, as weak economic data and corporate earnings results added to concerns over global economic growth. Activity in China's services sector expanded at a slower pace in April than in March, a private survey showed on Thursday, although firms resumed adding staff after a rare decline the previous month. That has added to concerns raised by disappointing manufacturing data from China and growth and inflation forecast downgrades by the European Commission. The Philippine stock index fell 1.2 percent and Malaysia finished 0.8 percent lower amid $51.02 million net foreign outflow. Singapore's Strait Times Index dropped 0.2 percent to a more than two-month closing low. Singapore-based NetResearch Asia said in a note that investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of the U.S. jobs report scheduled for Friday. "There was little news overnight to turn sentiment which is now decidedly cautious given weak corporate earnings and economic data," NetResearch said. Mixed data on the services sector in the United States also weighed on sentiment. The vast U.S. services sector expanded in April as new orders and employment accelerated, offering hope economic growth would rebound after a sluggish first quarter, data showed on Wednesday. But other figures showed private employers hired the fewest workers in three years, sparking concerns the all-important payrolls report might also disappoint. Bucking the trend, Vietnam's VN index closed 0.4 percent higher, boosted by banking shares on upbeat earnings results. Indonesia's markets were closed on Thursday for a holiday. SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS STOCK MARKETS Change on the day Market Current previous close Pct Move Singapore 2767.81 2773.07 -0.19 Manila 6999.75 7081.86 -1.16 Kuala Lumpur 1645.09 1657.58 -0.75 Ho Chi Minh 601.51 599.07 +0.41 Change so far this year Market Current End prev yr Pct Move Singapore 2767.81 2882.73 -3.99 Bangkok 1390.7 1288.02 7.97 Manila 6999.75 6952.08 0.69 Jakarta 4822.595 4593.008 5.00 Kuala Lumpur 1645.09 1692.51 -2.80 Ho Chi Minh 601.51 579.03 3.88 ($1 = 4.0020 ringgit) (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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