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Malaysia Bourse May Add To Monday's Winnings

The Malaysia stock market bounced higher again on Monday, one session after it had ended the three-day winning streak in which it had gathered almost 30 points or 1.9 percent. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,600-point plateau and it's tipped to open in the green again on Tuesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on growing optimism that a trade deal between the United States and China will soon be reached. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are tipped to follow suit.

The KLCI finished modestly higher on Monday following gains from the plantations and telecoms, while the financials came in mixed.

For the day, the index added 10.22 points or 0.64 percent to finish at the daily high of 1,603.56 after moving as low as 1,595.20. Volume was 2.6 billion shares worth 1.9 billion ringgit. There were 452 gainers and 360 decliners.

Among the actives, Hartalega Holdings surged 3.17 percent, while Top Glove soared 2.73 percent, Petronas Chemicals spiked 1.87 percent, Sime Darby Plantations accelerated 1.83 percent, Press Metal jumped 1.69 percent, Genting climbed 1.53 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong gathered 1.29 percent, AMMB Holdings perked 1.01 percent, IOI Corporation advanced 0.91 percent, Dialog Group and Tenaga Nasional both added 0.86 percent, Digi.com gained 0.64 percent, IHH Healthcare shed 0.53 percent, RHB Capital lost 0.52 percent, MISC rose 0.49 percent, Sime Darby was up 0.44 percent, Maybank collected 0.35 percent, Genting Malaysia increased 0.31 percent, CIMB Group dipped 0.19 percent and Axiata and Public Bank were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks opened higher Monday and stayed in the green, extending recent gains and hitting record closing highs.

The Dow added 114.75 points or 0.42 percent to 27,462.11, while the NASDAQ rose 46.80 points or 0.56 percent to 8,433.20 and the S&P 500 gained 11.36 points or 0.37 percent to 3,078.27.

The strength on Wall Street came as traders remain hopeful about a U.S.-China trade agreement, with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross expressing optimism phase one of a trade deal could be signed this month.

News on the merger-and-acquisition front also generated some positive sentiment, with shares of Wright Medical Group (WMGI) soaring after the medical device maker agreed to be acquired by larger rival Stryker (SYK) for $30.75 per share in cash.

Crude for December delivery moved higher on Monday, adding to recent gains on renewed optimism about the outlook for global demand. West Texas Intermediate climbed $0.45 or 0.80 percent to $56.68 per barrel.

Closer to home, the central bank in Malaysia will conclude its monetary policy meeting today and then announce its decision on interest rates. The bank is widely expected to keep its benchmark lending rate steady at 3.00 percent.

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