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Little Movement Seen For Malaysia Stock Market

The Malaysia stock market on Friday ended the two-day winning streak in which it had collected almost 10 points or 0.6 percent. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,685-point plateau and it figures to remain in that neighborhood again on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed and flat, with trade concerns offset by bargain hunting. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were little changed and the Asian markets figure to follow the latter lead.

The KLCI finished modestly lower on Friday following losses from the plantations and telecoms, while the financials were mixed.

For the day, the index shed 6.87 points or 0.41 percent to finish at 1,686.52 after trading between 1,683.71 and 1,690.43. Volume was 248 million shares worth RM1.7 billion ringgit. There were 407 gainers and 344 decliners.

Among the actives, Axiata plummeted 4.36 percent, while IOI Corporation plunged 1.72 percent, Tenaga Nasional tumbled 1.64 percent, MISC skidded 1.58 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong dropped 0.73 percent, IHH Healthcare retreated 0.70 percent, Dialog Group declined 0.66 percent, Sime Darby contracted 0.45 percent, Digi.com shed 0.43 percent, Top Glove Corporation and Hap Seng both advanced 0.41 percent, CIMB Group collected 0.35 percent, Genting Malaysia lost 0.30 percent, Public Bank and Petronas Chemical both gained 0.24 percent, Genting fell 0.14 percent and Maybank and Hong Leong Bank both eased 0.10 percent.

The lead from Wall Street offers little clarity as stocks fell under pressure early on Friday but recovered later in the day to end mixed and little changed.

The Dow shed 63.20 points or 0.25 percent to 25,106.33, while the NASDAQ added 9.85 points or 0.14 percent to 7,298.20 and the S&P 500 rose 1.83 points or 0.07 percent to 2,707.88. For the week, the Dow added 0.2 percent, and the NASDAQ and S&P both gained 0.1 percent.

The early weakness on Wall Street came amid lingering concerns about a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China. Adding to worries, reports suggested the U.S. and China don't even have a draft that specifies where they disagree.

Bargain hunting triggered the recovery later in the session as investors scooped up some of the oversold shares.

Crude oil prices settled slightly higher on Friday, despite concerns about possible drop in energy demand in the near term due to global economic slowdown. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for March ended up $0.08 or 0.2 percent at $52.72 a barrel.

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