April 8, 2019 / 3:26 AM / 18 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most edge higher on China stimulus, U.S. jobs data

    * Philippines leads gains
    * Singapore set to snap 7 sessions of gains
    * Indonesia hits two-week low

    By Shreya Mariam Job
    April 8 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stocks edged higher
on Monday as stimulus from China and better-than-expected U.S.
jobs data lifted sentiment and allayed concerns of a slowdown in
global economic growth. 
    On Sunday, China's central bank said it will step up its
policy of targeted cuts to banks' required reserve ratios to
encourage financing for small and medium-sized businesses.

    Meanwhile, U.S. employment growth accelerated from a
17-month low in March, but a moderation in wage gains supported
the Federal Reserve's decision to suspend further interest rate
increases this year.    
   "The underlying caution may resurface and prevail over
exuberance, keeping EM Asia FX and asset markets reined in even
if not on the back foot," said Vishnu Varathan, a senior
economist with Mizuho Bank, stating that the U.S. data, while
positive, is far from conclusive.
    "Expectations-beating US NFP (non-farm payrolls) is not
without the soft spots; be it a dip in participation rate or
weaker-than-projected wage gains," he added. 
    Southeast Asian countries engaged in talks on a major
China-backed trade pact expect to finalise it this year, adding
to the positive sentiment.
    The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) pact
envisions creation of a free trade zone encompassing 45 percent
of the world's population and more than a third of its GDP.
Negotiations on it began in 2012. 
    Philippine stocks led gains in the region with the
0.3 percent rise supported by industrials and financials. 
    Shares of SM Investment Corp and International
Container Terminal Services Inc added 0.6 percent and
2.8 percent, respectively.
    Indonesian shares dipped as much as 0.8 percent to
their lowest in two weeks, with telecom and consumer stocks
dragging the index. 
    Bank Indonesia on Friday said that the country's Consumer
Confidence Index had dropped tp 124.5 in March, compared to
125.1 in February. 
    Telekomunikasi Indonesia shed 1.5 percent while
Astra International Tbk PT lost 2 percent.
    Singapore stocks were set to snap a 7-session gaining
streak, sliding 0.2 percent, hurt by industrials.
    Thai markets were closed for a holiday. 
For Asian Companies click;  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS As at 0319 GMT
 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3316.23   3322.64         -0.19
 Manila                 7895.8    7873.18         0.29
 Jakarta                6426.035  6474.018        -0.74
 Kuala Lumpur           1644.83   1641.81         0.18
 Ho Chi Minh            990.54    989.26          0.13
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3316.23   3068.76         8.06
 Manila                 7895.8    7,466.02        5.76
 Jakarta                6426.035  6,194.50        3.74
 Kuala Lumpur           1644.83   1690.58         -2.71
 Ho Chi Minh            990.54    892.54          10.98
 
 (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by
Shreejay Sinha)
  
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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