August 16, 2018 / 10:08 AM / 4 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most markets fall as risk appetite remains fragile

    * Singapore posts over 1-month closing low
    * Thailand, Vietnam shares inch higher

    By Ambar Warrick
    Aug 16 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets
tracked broader Asia to end lower on Thursday, as Turkey's
currency woes and concerns of slowing economic growth in China
weighed on investor risk appetite.
    However, news that Beijing will hold trade talks with
Washington late this month helped markets cut some losses.
    A Chinese delegation led by Vice Minister of Commerce Wang
Shouwen will meet with U.S. representatives led by Under
Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs David Malpass,
the Ministry of Commerce said.
    But it is unclear whether it will take place before or after
Aug. 23, when Washington is due to activate additional tariffs
on $16 billion of Chinese goods.      
    Asian shares saw sustained sell-offs over the past few
sessions, driven by a slew of lukewarm Chinese economic data.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 fell to a one-year low on Thursday, having
plunged about 4 percent since last week.
    Investors also remained wary of a shock sell-off in
emerging-market currencies, as seen in Turkey's lira, after
trade tensions flared between Ankara and Washington.
    "The trade war between the U.S. and Turkey, which resulted
in a free-fall of the Turkish lira, has affected emerging
markets, especially Asia," said Manny Cruz, an analyst at
Asiasec Equities.
    In Southeast Asia, Singapore stocks closed at a more
than one-month low, dragged by financials. The city-state's top
lenders led the decline, with Oversea-Chinese Banking
Corporation Ltd and DBS Group Holdings Ltd
shedding 1.4 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.
    Singaporean banks reported record profits last year but
their prospects have been clouded this year by curbs on property
investment imposed in July and a slowdown in economic growth due
to international trade tensions.
    Indonesian shares declined for a third session in
four, with financials and telecom stocks weighing the most. They
gained in the previous session after Bank Indonesia hiked its
key interest rate for the fourth time since mid-May.
    The central bank flagged slowing economic growth in 2018,
stemming mainly from weakening economic fundamentals. 
    "Weakening growth will continue to drag market sentiment,
and it should compel fund managers and foreign investors to
continue selling," Cruz said.
    Bank Negara Indonesia ended 4.1 percent lower,
while Telekomunikasi Indonesia shed 2.3 percent. 
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
ended 0.8 percent lower.
    Malaysian shares fell, dragged by telecom and
utility stocks, ahead of second-quarter GDP data on Friday.
    The economic growth pace likely slowed again in the second
quarter of 2018, a Reuters poll showed.
    Meanwhile, Thai and Vietnam stocks gained
slightly.
        
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change on the day                            
 Market             Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3211.93   3234.12         -0.69
 Bangkok            1680.96   1676.29         0.28
 Manila             7517.36   7540.92         -0.31
 Jakarta            5783.798  5816.59         -0.56
 Kuala Lumpur       1777.27   1785.94         -0.49
 Ho Chi Minh        964.28    961.37          0.30
                                              
 Change on year                               
 Market             Current   End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore          3211.93   3402.92         -5.61
 Bangkok            1680.96   1753.71         -4.15
 Manila             7517.36   8558.42         -12.16
 Jakarta            5783.798  6355.654        -9.00
 Kuala Lumpur       1777.27   1796.81         -1.09
 Ho Chi Minh        964.28    984.24          -2.03
                                              
 
 (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
Sahu)
  
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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