January 18, 2017 / 4:31 AM / 2 years ago

SE Asia Stocks-Edge up as Trump's dollar comment buoys exporters

By Shashwat Pradhan
    Jan 18 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets inched
higher on Wednesday as investors picked up exporter shares after
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump expressed concerns over a
stronger dollar.
    In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump said
U.S. companies "can't compete with (China) now because our
currency is strong and it's killing us." 
    The dollar index, which measures the greenback
against six major peers, last stood at 100.41, up 0.1 percent,
after falling to 100.26 on Tuesday, its lowest since Dec. 8.
    "At the current level that the dollar has reached from six
months ago, I think it is already high enough to invite some
investments into exporting countries," said Joseph Roxas,
president of Manila-based Eagle Equities Inc.
    Sentiment was also boosted by oil prices which edged higher
with a weaker dollar underpinning markets, although gains were
limited by expectations that U.S. producers would boost
    MSCI's ex-Japan Asia-Pacific shares index 
rose 0.3 percent, just shy of a three-month high hit last
    Philippine stocks rose nearly half a percent and were
on track to snap five straight sessions of falls, powered by
industrial and real estate stocks.
    "Philippines is rebounding a bit after few days of
corrections. Last few days were really just corrections. We did
not even break 7,100 (level)," Roxas said.
    In other markets, Jakarta was headed for its first
rise in eight sessions on the back of gains in consumer staples
and financials.
    Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the benchmark
index by two to one.
    Malaysian stocks nudged higher with gains recorded
across most sectors.
    Malaysian palm oil futures rose more than 1.5 percent on
Tuesday, tracking gains in rival oilseed soy and supported by
bullish sentiment on tight market supplies in the
    Bucking the trend, Singapore was headed for a third
straight session of falls, with financials accounting for more
than half of the losses. United Overseas Bank Ltd, the
city-state's third-biggest lender, fell as much as 1.9 percent
in its biggest intraday percentage loss in nearly eight weeks.
For Asian Companies click;  

  Market           Current       previous     Pct Move
  Singapore        3000.53       3012.77      -0.41
  Bangkok          1569.7        1566.84      0.18
  Manila           7157.25       7123.33      0.48
  Jakarta          5285.568      5266.938     0.35
  Kuala Lumpur     1667.72       1663.03      0.28
 Ho Chi Minh       687.3         684.71       0.38
  Change so far                               
 this year                                    
  Market           Current       End prev yr  Pct Move
  Singapore        3000.53       2880.76      4.16
  Bangkok          1569.7        1542.94      1.73
  Manila           7157.25       6952.08      2.95
  Jakarta          5285.568      5296.711     -0.21
  Kuala Lumpur     1667.72       1641.73      1.58
 Ho Chi Minh       687.3         672.01       2.28
 (Reporting by Shashwat Pradhan in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
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