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Continued Support Expected For Malaysia Shares

The Malaysia stock market has finished higher in six straight sessions, rising more than 55 points or 4.1 percent along the way. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,435-point plateau and it's got another solid lead for Thursday's trade.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is broadly positive on optimism for economic recovery in the wake of the Covid-19 shutdown. The European and U.S. markets were sharply higher and the Asian markets are tipped to open in similar fashion.

The KLCI finished modestly higher on Wednesday following gains from the plantation stocks and mixed performances from the financials and telecoms.

For the day, the index gained 11.15 points or 0.78 percent to finish at the daily high of 1,435.12 after trading as low as1,420.18. Volume was 6.715 billion shares worth 3.628 billion ringgit. There were 561 gainers and 356 decliners.

Among the actives, Hartalega Holdings surged 4.55 percent, while IHH Healthcare soared 3.45 percent, Top Glove spiked 3.05 percent, Sime Darby accelerated 2.55 percent, Tenaga Nasional jumped 2.30 percent, Sime Darby Plantations climbed 2.07 percent, AMMB Holdings gathered 1.36 percent, Axiata tumbled 1.28 percent, Malaysia Airports skidded 1.20 percent, IOI Corporation perked 1.18 percent, Genting Malaysia dropped 0.84 percent, Maybank collected 0.54 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong advanced 0.28 percent, Dialog Group lost 0.27 percent, Public Bank sank 0.26 percent, Genting fell 0.25 percent and Petronas Chemicals, Maxis, RHB Capital, CIMB Group, Press Metals, Digi.com and MISC were all unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is upbeat as stocks showed a strong move to the upside on Wednesday, erasing the losses posted in the previous session.

The Dow climbed 369.04 points or 1.52 percent to finish at 24,575.90, while the NASDAQ surged 190.67 points or 2.08 percent to 9,375.78 and the S&P 500 jumped 48.67 points or 1.67 percent to end at 2,971.61.

The rally on Wall Street reflected optimism for an economic recovery as states reopen following the coronavirus-induced lockdowns. Early indications suggest the states that have reopened have not seen a spike in coronavirus cases, which has led to hopes the economy may rebound more quickly than expected.

Positive sentiment was also generated by earnings news from home improvement retailer Lowe's (LOW), which reported Q1 results that exceeded estimates on both the top and bottom lines.

Also, the minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest monetary policy meeting highlighted concerns about the uncertainty and risks to economic activity created by the coronavirus pandemic.

Crude oil prices climbed to a 10-week high on Wednesday after data showed a drop in crude stockpiles, and amid optimism about a pickup in energy demand. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for July ended up $1.53, or 4.8 percent at $33.49 a barrel, the highest since March 10.

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