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Malaysia Stock Market Overdue For Consolidation

The Malaysia stock market has moved higher in seven straight sessions, soaring more than 120 points or 8.3 percent in that span. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,560-point plateau although investors figure to cash in on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is soft, with profit taking likely after recent strength. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were mixed and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.

The KLCI finished sharply higher on Thursday following gains from the financial shares, industrial issues and telecoms.

For the day, the index jumped 23.31 points or 1.52 percent to finish at the daily high of 1,561.84 after trading as low as 1,541.50. Volume was 8.188 billion shares worth 6.115 billion ringgit. There were 634 gainers and 389 decliners.

Among the actives, Hap Seng Consolidated skyrocketed 15.66 percent, while Petronas Chemicals surged 6.74 percent, Top Glove soared 5.03 percent, Hartalega Holdings spiked 4.99 percent, CIMB Group accelerated 3.13 percent, RHB Capital jumped 2.80 percent, Maybank collected 2.63 percent, Press Metal climbed 2.63 percent, Dialog Group tumbled 2.56 percent, IHH Healthcare gathered 1.64 percent, Sime Darby Plantations perked 1.43 percent, Axiata skidded 1.32 percent, Maxis dropped 1.29 percent, Digi.com sank 1.11 percent, MISC advanced 1.09 percent, Sime Darby added 0.93 percent, Genting Malaysia shed 0.77 percent, Public Bank gained 0.69 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong rose 0.63 percent, Malaysia Airports Holdings lost 0.51 percent, Tenaga Nasional increased 0.33 percent, AMMB Holdings was up 0.31 percent, Petronas Gas eased 0.11 percent and Genting, Petronas Dagangan and IOI Corporation were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street offers little clarity as stocks turned in a lackluster performance on Thursday before eventually ending the day mixed.

The Dow added 11.93 points or 0.05 percent to finish at 26,281.82, while the NASDAQ shed 67.10 points or 0.69 percent to end at 9,615.81and the S&P 500 fell 10.52 points or 0.34 percent to close at 3,112.35.

The choppy trading on Wall Street came as traders took a breath to digest the recent strength and lock in gains; they also seemed reluctant to make more significant moves ahead of the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report later today.

In economic news, the Labor Department said the pace of decline in first-time claims for unemployment benefits has begun to stall a bit, although there was an unexpected increase in continuing claims.

Earlier in the day, some buying interest was generated in reaction to the European Central Bank announcing additional stimulus to deal with the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

Crude oil prices edged higher on Thursday after data showed that leading oil producers were in compliance with agreed production cuts. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for July ended up $0.12 or 0.3 percent at $37.41 a barrel.

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