May 9, 2017 / 5:19 AM / a year ago

SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia hits fresh high, S'pore scales 21-mth peak

    By Hanna Paul
    May 9 (Reuters) - Singapore shares hit a 21-month high on
Tuesday on strong results from lenders, and Indonesia inched up
to a fresh high before trading flat, while other Southeast Asian
markets were range-bound in the absence of broad catalysts.
    Regional markets tracked broader Asian and Wall Street peers
as investors seek the next catalyst following the French
presidential election on Sunday.
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 slipped 0.1 percent.
    "Asian markets await the results of South Korean
presidential elections amid a relatively quiet economic data
calendar," OCBC Bank said in a note.
    South Koreans go to the polls on Tuesday to elect a new
leader, after a corruption scandal that brought down former
President Park Geun-hye.
    Singapore stocks gained as much as 0.4 percent to hit
their highest since July 2015 as financials swept gains on the
benchmark, led by top banks Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp
 and DBS Group Holdings.
    The city-state's second-biggest lender, Oversea-Chinese
Banking, reported a 14 percent rise in quarterly profit, and
kept up the positive tone set by top banks after DBS beat market
estimates and United Overseas Bank recorded a rise in
quarterly profit.
    Jakarta SE Composite Index rose as much as 0.7
percent, on track for its fourth consecutive session of gains.
    Gains in financials and consumer stocks held the index up,
with PT Bank Agris Tbk and food distributor PT
Wicaksana Overseas International Tbk among top
    Indonesia's economic growth is seen edging up 5 percent in
the first quarter as the region's largest economy is expected to
have grown faster on improved exports, according to a Reuters
poll. The data is due on Thursday.   
    The Philippines, however, fell as much as 0.4 percent
on profit-taking to snap three sessions of gains on the back of
strong corporate earnings.
    Ayala Corp dipped as much as 1.1 percent after
hitting an eight-month high on Monday, while SM Prime Holdings
 rose 1 percent.
    "We've been up for three days, so I think investors are
taking profits in stocks which hit new highs such as Ayala,"
said Richard Llaneda of Eagle Equities.
    The Philippines named Nestor Espenilla as its next central
bank governor on Monday.
    The much anticipated announcement comes ahead of a policy
meeting on Thursday, and ends months of speculation about what
could be the most important appointment of Rodrigo Duterte's
For Asian Companies click;  

  Market           Current       Previous     Pct Move
  Singapore        3245.46       3236.98      0.26
  Bangkok          1568.61       1568.02      0.04
  Manila           7943.15       7962.33      -0.24
  Jakarta          5712.535      5707.862     0.08
  Kuala Lumpur     1766.16       1768.15      -0.11
  Ho Chi Minh      720.56        718.86       0.24
  Change on year                              
  Market           Current       End 2016     Pct Move
  Singapore        3245.46       2880.76      12.66
  Bangkok          1568.61       1542.94      1.66
  Manila           7943.15       6840.64      16.1
 ; Jakarta         5712.535      5296.711     7.85
  Kuala Lumpur     1766.16       1641.73      7.58
  Ho Chi Minh      720.56        664.87       8.4

 (Reporting by Hanna Paul; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)
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