SE Asia Stocks-Slip ahead of U.S. jobs data; Political woes continue to mar Philippines
By Anusha Ravindranath Oct 7 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets fell on Friday as traders remained on edge ahead of a key U.S. jobs report that could signal the timing of the next Federal Reserve rate hike. Strong U.S. jobs numbers can fuel the expectations of a Fed rate hike in December and ripple through markets. The International Monetary Fund warned on Thursday that a disorderly reaction to possible U.S. interest rate hikes could disrupt capital flows and heighten asset price volatility in Asia. Asian shares dropped with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan losing around 0.4 percent. Several U.S. economic indicators paint the picture of the economy being on a firmer footing, said Grace Aller of AP Securities, adding Fed officials are running out of reasons to further delay rate hikes. Philippine shares posted their second straight weekly loss, with telecom stocks leading the decline. "Duterte's antics is probably getting on to the nerves of investors", said Mikey Macainag of Sunsecurities in Manila. "Everybody wants to be aligned with the U.S. but unfortunately our government is saying that we don't really need them. Let's see what happens after the (U.S.) elections". Tensions on the political front rose after the Philippine defence minister said the military could manage without U.S. aid. Singapore shares slipped, sparked by a sell-off in telecom and consumer services stocks, while Vietnam shed more than 1 percent during the session. Thai shares fell after four days of gains, but rose 1.4 percent on the week, while Malyasian shares closed almost flat, but gained 0.8 percent on the week. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current previous Pct Move close Singapore 2875.24 2885.22 -0.35 Bangkok 1504.34 1513.86 -0.63 Manila 7578.29 7620.16 -0.55 Jakarta 5377.149 4885.163 -0.6 Kuala Lumpur 1665.38 1666.73 -0.08 Ho Chi Minh 683.95 687.32 -0.49 Change so far this year Market Current End prev yr Pct Move Singapore 2875.24 2882.73 -0.26 Bangkok 1504.34 1288.02 16.79 Manila 7578.29 6952.08 9.01 Jakarta 4879.965 4593.008 6.25 Kuala Lumpur 1665.38 1692.51 -1.60 Ho Chi Minh 683.95 579.03 18.12 (Reporting by Anusha Ravindranath in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Susan Mathew; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)
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