SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia hits more than 1-year closing high
By Rushil Dutta July 20 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stocks closed higher on Wednesday, with Indonesia climbing to a near 14-month high, extending the rally into a fourth session on continued investor risk appetite. Indonesia's main index closed up 1.4 percent to its highest close since May 27, 2015, led by consumer staples and financials. The broader risk-on sentiment still remains intact, said Taye Shim, analyst, Jakarta-based Daewoo Securities. "However, we see near-term challenges as investors are likely to seek evidences like Q216 corporate earnings, GDP growth, fund repatriation etc. to justify the recent price rally." Investors are also expected to keep an eye out for a decision on interest rates by the Indonesian central bank on Thursday. In a Reuters poll, 11 of 16 economists said Bank Indonesia (BI) will cut the benchmark 12-month reference rate by 25 basis points to 6.25 percent to help spur economic growth. The European Central Bank also plans to have a policy meeting on Thursday and is not expected to change its monetary stance. Governments in China, Japan and Britain have already started easing their fiscal stance or hinted at plans to do so. Cigarette makers Hanjaya Mandala Sampoerna Tbk PT and Gudang Garam Tbk PT gained 6.2 percent and 4.4 percent, respectively. Thai stocks gained 1.2 percent, driven by energy and telecom stocks. Oil futures rose in early Asian trading on Wednesday but gains were limited, and the U.S. crude traded sideways before the release of official weekly inventory figures later in the day. PTT PCL and PTT Exploration and Production PCL gained 3.05 percent and 1.2 percent, respectively. Singapore stocks finished up 0.9 percent, driven by financials and consumer services. Among the biggest gainers, Genting Singapore rose 1.9 percent. Malaysia finished flat, shrugging off government data showing a fourth consecutive month in which the inflation rate has slowed. Vietnam extended losses for a second day, falling 1.1 percent, dragged down by financials and energy stocks. Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp lost 2.3 percent. Philippines ended marginally higher. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current Previous Pct Move Close Singapore 2945.74 2919.54 0.90 Bangkok 1510.03 1492 1.21 Manila 8051.97 8036.01 0.20 Jakarta 5242.823 5172.83 1.35 Kuala Lumpur 1669.61 1670.55 -0.06 Ho Chi Minh 660.26 667.76 -1.12 Change on year Market Current End 2015 Pct Move Singapore 2945.74 2882.73 2.19 Bangkok 1510.03 1288.02 17.24 Manila 8051.97 6952.08 15.82 Jakarta 5242.823 4593.008 14.15 Kuala Lumpur 1669.61 1692.51 -1.35 Ho Chi Minh 660.26 579.03 14.03 ($1 = 13,090.0000 rupiah) (Reporting by Rushil Dutta; Additional reporting by Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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