SE Asia Stocks-Malaysia ends at 2-week low; Singapore gains on China's stimulus hopes

* Vietnam posts third straight loss
* Malaysia drops to two-week closing low
* Thai index posts fourth consecutive gain

By Shreya Mariam Job
June 13 (Reuters) - The Malaysian stock market hit a
two-week closing low on Thursday dragged by utility stocks, as a
U.S.-China standoff over terms of a trade deal dampened investor
sentiment, while hopes of further stimulus from Beijing boosted
some of its trading partners such as Singapore.
China's commerce ministry said on Thursday Beijing will not
yield to any "maximum pressure" from Washington, and any attempt
by the United States to force China into accepting a trade deal
will fail.
However, the few markets in the Southeast Asian region found
support after China's Vice Premier Liu He signalled further
stimulus by the regulators to shore up its ailing economy.
Beijing has plenty of policy tools and is capable of dealing
with various challenges, Liu said at a financial forum in
Shanghai. The government will roll out more strong measures to
promote reforms and opening up, he added.
This comes after data showed China's credit growth was
weaker than expected in May, and ahead of retail sales and
industrial output data expected on Friday.
"...The Chinese economy is currently a stimulus-driven
economy but regular economic activity has slowed down" ING said
in a note to its clients.
The Malaysian benchmark index closed in the red, as
utility stocks dragged.
Shares of state utility firm Tenaga Nasional Bhd
closed at an over two-week low, falling 1.8% in the session.
Meanwhile, shares of Genting Bhd dropped 2.1%.
Vietnam's index declined 0.4%, weighed down by
consumer and real estate stocks.
Shares of Vietnam Dairy Products JSC slipped 1.6%,
while those of top property stock Vingroup JSC dipped
The Indonesian benchmark also inched lower.
Indonesia's economic growth in 2019 is expected to be slower
than a 5.3% target in the state budget due to more sluggish
global economic growth, lower trade volume and low commodity
prices, its finance minister said on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Singapore's benchmark index erased early
losses to end the session 0.4% higher with financial and
consumer stocks supporting the index.
Wilmar International Ltd gained 2.4%, while City
Developments Ltd posted an eight-day winning streak
rising 2.5%.
The Philippine index reversed course to end slightly
higher, with a jump in volumes in the last half hour of trade.
Industrial stocks drove gains in the index with
International Container Terminal Services and JG Summit
Holdings Inc adding 3.1% and 2.3%, respectively.
The Thai index extended gains into its fourth
consecutive session with a 0.2% rise.

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Change on the day
Market Current Previous close Pct Move
Singapore 3220.66 3207.74 0.40
Bangkok 1674.14 1671.11 0.18
Manila 8051.76 8030.98 0.26
Jakarta 6273.082 6276.177 -0.05
Kuala Lumpur 1643.74 1650.74 -0.42
Ho Chi Minh 950.08 954.17 -0.43

Change so far in 2019
Market Current End 2018 Pct Move
Singapore 3220.66 3068.76 4.95
Bangkok 1674.14 1563.88 7.05
Manila 8051.76 7,466.02 7.85
Jakarta 6273.082 6,194.50 1.27
Kuala Lumpur 1643.74 1690.58 -2.77
Ho Chi Minh 950.08 892.54 6.45

(Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi

First Published: 2019-06-13 06:22:41
Updated 2019-06-13 12:05:05

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