September 20, 2016 / 9:57 AM / 2 years ago

SE Asia Stocks-Mixed as investors await BOJ, Fed decisions

By Aparajita Saxena
    Sept 20 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian markets ended mixed on
Tuesday as uncertainty over policy moves by the U.S. Federal
Reserve and the Bank of Japan kept investors on the sidelines.
    The Federal Open Market Committee is expected to stand pat
on interest rates, while the BOJ is expected to make crucial
changes to its easing programme.
    A Reuters poll of economists found on Tuesday that the BOJ
is expected to further ease its ultra-loose policies at this
week's meeting, as it struggles to overcome chronic stagnation
and quell speculation that it is running out of options.
    Economists were largely split over whether the BOJ's next
move would be to cut its negative interest rate even deeper, or
to ramp up or recalibrate its asset purchase programme, or even
do both. 
    Statements from the central bank's officials also suggested
that there is room to cut interest rates further, despite
criticism that they are hurting financial institutions and even
damaging economic sentiment, adding to the speculation that the
BOJ will in fact take easing measures. 
    "Given monetary easing is the current consensus, no actions
from BOJ might lead to further disappointment after the European
Central Bank's disappointing rate decision," Daewoo Securities
analyst Taye Shim said in a note.
    Investors will maintain a wait-and-see stance, and will
follow Wall Street movements closely, said Grace Aller of AP
Securities in Manila.
    Thai shares extended their morning losses to snap
five sessions of gains, underperforming other markets in the
    Financials led losses, with Siam Commercial Bank 
shedding 1.3 percent.
    Energy stocks, Thailand's third largest sector by market
value, also dropped on a decline in global oil prices after
Venezuela said global supplies needed to fall by 10 percent in
order to bring production down to consumption levels. 
    Vietnam reversed its morning losses and ended 0.8
percent higher, extending yesterday's gain, with utilities
supporting the uptrend.
    Philippine shares extended morning session gains to
end 1.3 percent higher, supported by financials.
    SM Prime Holdings advanced 3.2 percent.
    A Reuters poll showed the Philippine central bank is
expected to keep its benchmark interest rate steady on Thursday.
    The poll also showed that if inflation picks up and the U.S.
Fed tightens its policy, the Philippine central bank may turn
hawkish next year. 
    For Asian Companies click; 
  STOCK MARKETS                                        
  Change on day                                        
  Market           Current       previous     Pct Move
  Singapore        2854.69       2852.14      0.09
  Bangkok          1473.78       1492.73      -1.27
  Manila           7671.72       7575.84      1.27
  Jakarta          5302.493      5321.841     -0.36
  Kuala Lumpur     1655.78       1651.71      0.25
 Ho Chi Minh       663.37        657.89       0.83
  Change this                                 
  Market           Current       End prev yr  Pct Move
  Singapore        2854.69       2882.73      -0.97
  Bangkok          1473.78       1288.02      14.42
  Manila           7671.72       6952.08      10.35
  Jakarta          5302.493      4593.008     15.45
  Kuala Lumpur     1655.78       1692.51      -2.17
 Ho Chi Minh       663.37        579.03       14.57

 (Reporting by Aparajita Saxena in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu and Amrutha Gayathri)
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