SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia gains; market subdued ahead of Yellen speech
Aug 25 (Reuters) - Indonesian shares gained nearly 1 percent on Thursday while other markets in the region were largely lacklustre as investors awaited cues on U.S. interest rates from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's speech on Friday. Markets expect Yellen to outline a clearer time frame for the next U.S. rate hike after strong housing data this week and upbeat comments by other Fed officials, but many analysts expect her to strike a more neutral stance. Indonesian stocks posted their first gain in three sessions led by utilities, with Perusahaan Gas Negara (Persero) Tbk PT gaining 4.1 percent. Harry Su, an analyst with Jakarta-based Bahana Securities, attributed the gains to a technical rebound, adding that a rise in emerging market exchange-traded funds(ETFs) helped Indonesian ETFs, further boosting the market curve. Market participants are still hoping that the tax amnesty programme will be a success, propelling the market to be the best performer in the region, Su added. The Jakarta Composite Index had gained 17.7 percent this year as of Wednesday's close. Vietnamese shares eased after two sessions of gains to end marginally lower, with energy shares tumbling on a decline in global oil prices. Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp ended 2.4 percent lower. The market was cautious ahead of Yellen's speech, with the weakness on Wall Street and lower commodity prices weighing on sentiment, said Fiachra MacCana, head of research at Ho Chi Minh Securities. "There is a hint of nervousness in the air with investors expecting the speech to lay out a possible rationale for a rate hike before the year-end," MacCana said. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current Prev close Pct Move Singapore 2876.93 2869.57 0.26 Bangkok 1544.1 1547.55 -0.22 Manila 7854.54 7866.13 -0.15 Jakarta 5454.116 5403.992 0.93 Kuala Lumpur 1680.3 1682.06 -0.10 Ho Chi Minh 658.5 660.77 -0.34 Change on year Market Current End 2015 Pct Move Singapore 2876.93 2882.73 -0.20 Bangkok 1544.1 1288.02 19.88 Manila 7854.54 6952.08 12.98 Jakarta 5454.116 4593.008 18.75 Kuala Lumpur 1680.3 1692.51 -0.72 Ho Chi Minh 658.5 579.03 13.72 (Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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