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Malaysia Shares Figure To Open Under Pressure

The Malaysia stock market has finished lower in back-to-back trading says, dropping almost 45 points or 3 percent in that span. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,490-point plateau and it's looking at another soft start again on Tuesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests a sharply lower open due to coronavirus fears, although some bargain hunting may take hold as the day progresses. The European and U.S. bourses were firmly in the red and the Asian markets are expected to at least open in similar fashion.

The KLCI finished sharply lower on Monday, with heavy losses in all sectors on growing concerns about the effect of the coronavirus.

For the day, the index skidded 41.14 points or 2.69 percent to finish at 1,490.06 after trading between 1,486.71 and 1,510.42. Volume was 4 billion shares worth 3.9 billion ringgit. There were 1,015 decliners and 138 gainers.

Among the actives, Sime Darby plummeted 5.24 percent, while Tenaga Nasional plunged 5.01 percent, Genting tumbled 4.53 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong skidded 4.31 percent, Public Bank retreated 4.08 percent, RHB Capital declined 3.68 percent, MISC sank 3.51 percent, IOI Corporation dropped 3.37 percent, Sime Darby Plantations shed 2.97 percent, Top Glove jumped 2.84 percent, CIMB Group lost 2.80 percent, Genting Malaysia fell 2.64 percent, Axiata slid 2.59 percent, Maybank dipped 2.50 percent, Petronas Chemicals gave away 1.40 percent, Hartalega Holdings advanced 0.51 percent and Press Metal was down 0.41 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is brutal as stocks opened sharply lower on Monday and the losses accelerated as the day progressed.

The Dow fell 1,031.61 points or 3.56 percent to end at 27,960.80, while the NASDAQ lost 355.31 points or 3.71 percent to 9,221.28 and the S&P sank 111.86 points or 3.35 percent to 3,225.89.

The sell-off on Wall Street reflected concerns about the spread of the coronavirus amid a spike in the number of confirmed cases outside of China.

Traders shrugged off concerns about the virus earlier this month, helping propel stocks to new record highs amid optimism the outbreak would quickly be contained. But the continued spread of the virus along with several companies warning about the financial impact seems to have traders reassessing their positions.

Gold stocks were among the few groups that bucked the downtrend as the safe haven precious metal for April delivery soared $27.80 to $1,676.60 an ounce.

Crude oil prices plunged sharply on Monday amid rising concerns for the outlook for energy demand due to the rapidly spreading coronavirus outside China. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for April ended down $1.95 or 3.7 percent at $51.43 a barrel.

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