UALA LUMPUR: Profit taking picked up on Bursa Malaysia today, with selling seen across the board and the KL Composite Index recording its biggest one-day loss since March 30.
Key Asian markets also closed lower. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 1.7% to 17,776.66 points, Japan's Nikkei 225 lost 1.39% to 9,703.72 and Singapore's Straits Times Index fell 1.51% to 2,237.20 points.
European markets were also in the red in early trade as investors began cashing out on concerns the rally, which was in its fourth month, could be coming to an end, analysts said.
Light crude oil rose above the key US$70 (RM247.10) level, up 29 cents to US$71.32 but the third-month crude palm oil futures fell RM76 to RM2,299.
At Bursa, blue chips extended their losses for the third straight day, sending the KLCI down 1.54% or 16.49 points to 1,054.41 points, its biggest single-day loss since March 30 this year when it fell 1.82%.
Turnover was 1.73 billion shares valued at RM1.62 billion. The broader market was weaker with declining stocks beating advancers 723 to 90 while 138 counters were unchanged.
The major losers were Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank), Genting Bhd, Bumiputra-Commerce Holdings Bhd, IOI Corporation Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Sime Darby Bhd and IJM Corporation Bhd.
However, year-to-date, key Asian markets are in positive zone. The best performer is Singapore, up 27% while Hong Kong is up 23.56%, Malaysia 20.26% and Japan 9.53%.
Jupiter Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Pong Teng Siew said the current market performance was expected as the upward trend had been driven purely by excess liquidity.
He added that Bursa's losses this week were in line with other key regional markets.
"There was a lot of liquidity in most economies as central banks were injecting money into the system. However, economies were shrinking and the excess liquidity flowed into stock markets. There were a lot of expectations, but on the earnings side, things were not strong. In Malaysia, the stock market was supported primarily by domestic funds," he said.
Pong said that while share prices moved in response to changes in fundamentals, they could react when liquidity was pumped in due to speculative reasons or on rumours. He said the bull run had ended and the next peak might not happen until later this year.
When asked if the recent spate of unusual market activity queries issued by Bursa Malaysia Securities had made investors edgy, Pong said it was not a major factor.
"The surge in some of the share prices is actually a reflection of speculation due to excess liquidity," he said.
Emico Holdings Bhd and Dataprep Holdings Bhd were the latest companies queried by Bursa Securities over the unusual market activity of their shares.
Maybank fell 25 sen to RM5.65; Genting, BCHB and IJM Corp lost 20 sen each to RM5.35, RM8.95 and RM5.45, respectively, while Tenaga gave up 10 sen to RM7.60.
Berjaya Land Bhd fell 22 sen to RM3.54, Khind Holdings Bhd was down 20.5 sen to 69.5 sen, Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor Bhd declined 20 sen to RM2.09 while Concrete Engineering Products Bhd lost 18 sen to RM3.
UEM Land Holdings Bhd was the most actively traded stock with 71 million shares done. It lost 24 sen to RM1.59 after Dubai's Damac Properties (M) Sdn Bhd pulled out of a deal with UEM Land to acquire a piece of land for RM396.44 million in Nusajaya, Iskandar Malaysia.
Kurnia Setia Bhd was the top gainer, rising 23 sen to RM2.64 after its major shareholders revised upwards the takeover offer price by 14.2%. Kurnia's warrants added 15.5 sen to RM1.15. The offer was raised to RM2.70 per share and RM1.20 per warrant, from RM2.40 and 90 sen respectively.
Satang Holdings Bhd added 11.5 sen to 35 sen, Shell Refining Company (Federation of Malaya) Bhd rose 10 sen to RM10.30, while DFZ Capital Bhd, Taliworks Corporation Bhd and RHB Capital Bhd gained eight sen each to RM3.90, RM1.80 and RM4.20, respectively.
Other actively traded stocks included KNM Group Bhd, Compugates Holdings Bhd, Iris Corporation Bhd and Scomi Group Bhd.
Emico, in reply to Bursa Malaysia Securities today, said it was unaware of any factors resulting in the unusual market activity in its shares recently, particularly on Wednesday.
Trading in the shares was halted at 2.30pm, and would resume tomorrow. The counter was last traded at 53 sen with 7.35 million shares done.
Dataprep saw active trade with 18.45 million units done. It closed eight sen lower at 42.5 sen.
Friday, June 19, 2009