SE Asia Stocks-Thai shares near 2-week highs; S'pore property up
BANGKOK, March 31 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stocks rose on Monday, with Thai shares hovering near two-week highs amid buying in index heavyweights while Singapore shares gained for a fourth session, helped by expectations of potential stimulus in China. The Thai SET index was up 0.7 percent at midday, heading for a second month of gains. Among actively traded shares, Kasikornbank rose to near two-week highs on buying via a number of block trades. Foreign investors and domestic institutions were active buyers of Thai shares last week, mainly due to 'window dressing'. Jitters over the domestic political crisis remain and the market could be more subdued later in the week in the absence of 'window dressing', brokers said. "We expect the Thai market to move up in a tight range on Monday, as the short-term support from the buying at the end of quarter remains. As the first quarter was quite tough, portfolio managers are likely to have to manage their books," strategists at broker KGI Securities wrote in a report. Singapore's Straits Times index rose 0.6 percent, poised to end the month with a gain of more than 2 percent. Shares of CapitaLand and CapitaMalls Asia led among the gainers. The Philippine index was up 0.8 percent, on track for a modest loss on the month. Shares of Alliance Global Group bucked the trend, down 0.4 percent after selling via a block trade. Stocks in Malaysia and Vietnam trimmed their monthly gains to 0.7 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively. Indonesia was shut for a market holiday. The index has gained 3.2 percent in March, a fourth straight month, and was up 11.6 percent in the first quarter of the year. For Asian Companies click; For South East Asia Hot Stock reports, click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change at 0635 GMT Market Current Prev Close Pct Move TR SE Asia Index* 408.68 406.94 +0.43 Singapore 3189.67 3172.17 +0.55 Kuala Lumpur 1847.38 1850.73 -0.18 Bangkok 1377.89 1368.90 +0.66 Jakarta 4768.28 4723.06 +0.96 Manila 6412.85 6359.62 +0.84 Ho Chi Minh 593.25 594.29 -0.17 * The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Suni Nair)
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