March 8, 2019 / 10:08 AM / 18 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Fall as dismal China trade data stokes global growth fears

    * China Feb exports fall 20.8 pct
    * Philippines snaps two straight sessions of gains
    * Indonesian shares hit 1-1/2-mth closing low

    By Shriya Ramakrishnan
    March 8 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stocks tumbled on Friday
in line with broader Asian peers, after the region's largest
trading partner, China, reported a sharper-than-expected fall in
exports in February, reigniting concerns of a global slowdown. 
    Exports from Beijing in February fell 20.7 percent from a
year earlier - the largest decline in three years - compared to
forecasts of a 4.8 percent drop, pointing to a further cooling
in the economy despite a spate of support measures.
    The data comes just a day after the European Central Bank
slashed its growth forecasts, deferring rate hikes until 2020
and offering banks a new round of cheap loans, as it cautioned
that the economy was in "a period of continued weakness and
pervasive uncertainty".
    "Even as the measures taken by ECB were not too surprising,
the pre-emptive timing clearly was, and was a clear admission of
greater concern about the economy," Madhavi Arora, an economist
at Edelweiss Securities Limited said in a note.
    In Southeast Asia, the Singapore index fell for a
third session in four, dropping 1 percent to a more than
one-month low with broad-based losses. 
    The country's largest lender DBS Group Holdings Ltd
 and Singapore Telecommunications Ltd lost 1
percent each.
    The Singapore benchmark index posted a 0.8 percent fall for
the week.
    Philippine stocks snapped their two-day rally,
declining 1.1 percent, hurt by weakness in industrial and
financial sectors.
    SM Investments Corp and Bank of the Philippine
Islands were among the biggest drags on the benchmark
index, shedding 3 and 2.2 percent, respectively.
    However, the Philippine stock index, which was the worst
performer in the region last week, recorded a weekly gain of 2
percent. 
    Indonesian shares fell 1.2 percent to a
one-and-a-half-month low as trading resumed after a holiday on
Thursday, with financial and consumer stocks taking the biggest
hit.
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
declined 1.4 percent. 
    Vietnam stocks, which have outperformed their
regional peers by a vast margin this year, closed 0.9 percent
lower on Friday.
    Shares of oil and gas refiner Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock
Corp fell 1.9 percent, while real estate firm Vinhomes
JSC lost 0.5 percent. 
    
    
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3195.87   3229.48         -1.04
 Bangkok                1630.12   1633.21         -0.19
 Manila                 7797.11   7881.79         -1.07
 Jakarta                6383.068  6457.956        -1.16
 Kuala Lumpur           1679.9    1686.95         -0.42
 Ho Chi Minh            985.25    994.03          -0.88
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3195.87   3068.76         4.14
 Bangkok                1630.12   1563.88         4.24
 Manila                 7797.11   7,466.02        4.43
 Jakarta                6383.068  6,194.50        3.04
 Kuala Lumpur           1679.9    1690.58         -0.63
 Ho Chi Minh            985.25    892.54          10.39
 
 (Reporting by Shriya Ramakrishnan; Editing by Shreejay Sinha)
  
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