SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia heads for record close, palm oil shares lead

viernes 6 de febrero de 2015 04:23 GYT

BANGKOK, Feb 6 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets
rose on Friday, with Singapore key stock index climbing to the
highest in more than 20 months and Indonesian benchmark heading
for a record closing high amid gains in shares of palm oil
    The Indonesian government's proposal to ramp up biodiesel
subsidies overcame its final parliamentary hurdle on Friday, an
Energy Ministry official said, noting that the subsidy increase
could take effect next month. 
    Investors bought shares of palm oil companies on
expectations that a hike in subsidies could help boost the use
of palm oil for blending into biodiesel. A Jakarta-based analyst
said higher oil prices also lifted sentiment on palm oil stocks.
    Indonesia's listed palm oil firm Astra Agro Lestari
 surged more than 7 percent to the highest since
August, while Jakarta composite index was up 1 percent
at 5,333.07, surpassing the record close of 5,323.88 on Jan. 23.
    Singapore's Straits Times Index gained about 1
percent, at one point touching 3,441.66, the highest since May
2013. Top gainers included shares of Golden Agri-Resources
 which rose more than 7 percent.
    In Bangkok, index heavyweight energy stock PTT Exploration
and Production rose 0.8 percent, helping send the benchmark SET
index 0.3 percent higher. It was up almost 2 percent on
the week, among Southeast Asia's outperformers.
    A rebound in oil price lifted sentiment in energy stocks but
brokers expect near-term volatility
    "Trading volatility will remain high as oil prices still do
not show a strong trend of recovery and, more importantly in the
near-term, Greece's debt situation remains fluid," broker KGI
Securities said in a report.
    Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras pledged on Thursday to
"put an end once and for all" to the European Union's austerity
policies and to bargain hard for a new deal for Greece.
    Asian shares edged higher on Friday but investors remained
wary ahead of the U.S. nonfarm payrolls report for January later
in the session. 
    Nonfarm payrolls probably increased 234,000 last month after
advancing by 252,000 in December, according to a Reuters survey
of economists. It would be the 12th straight month of job gains
above 200,000, the longest streak since 1994. 
    Among bright spots, the Philippine main index 
finished up 0.7 percent at 7,728.18, a record closing high. It
notched up a gain of 0.5 percent on the week, a seventh
consecutive week.
    Shares of Universal Robina Corp jumped 3.4 percent
after it reported a 13 percent rise in quarterly net income.
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 Change at 0805 GMT
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 Singapore          3434.93       3406.58       +0.83
 Kuala Lumpur       1810.41       1803.21       +0.40
 Bangkok            1611.88       1607.92       +0.25
 Jakarta            5333.07       5279.89       +1.01
 Manila             7728.18       7674.24       +0.70
 Ho Chi Minh         574.13        567.17       +1.23
 (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Additional reporting by
Fransiska Nangoy in Jakarta; Editing by Anand Basu)