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Lower Open Expected For Malaysia Stock Market

The Malaysia stock market has moved lower in back-to-back sessions, dropping almost 10 points or 0.6 percent along the way. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index now rests just above the 1,625-point plateau and it may take further damage on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is negative on disappointing earnings news and ongoing concerns over the spread of the coronavirus. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asia bourses figure to follow suit.

The KLCI finished modestly lower on Friday following losses from the financial shares and plantation stocks, while the glove makers were mixed.

For the day, the index lost 8.70 points or 0.53 percent to finish at 1,627.01 after trading between 1,626.25 and 1,637.88. Volume was 5.850 billion shares worth 4.063 billion ringgit. There were 571 decliners and 512 gainers.

Among the actives, Telekom Malaysia surged 3.42 percent, while Sime Darby Plantations plummeted 2.69 percent, IHH Healthcare plunged 2.34 percent, Public Bank tanked 2.30 percent, MISC tumbled 1.50 percent, Axiata skidded 1.35 percent, Genting Malaysia spiked 1.21 percent, Maybank retreated 1.20 percent, IOI Corporation declined 1.11 percent, CIMB Group surrendered 0.97 percent, Supermax jumped 0.90 percent, Hartalega Holdings sank 0.81 percent, Top Glove climbed 0.78 percent, Digi.com advanced 0.74 percent, RHB Capital dropped 0.73 percent, Genting added 0.70 percent, Tenaga Nasional gained 0.59 percent, Kuala Lumpur Kepong shed 0.58 percent, Sime Darby rose 0.43 percent, Press Metal lost 0.34 percent, Dialog Group improved 0.30 percent and Petronas Chemicals was up 0.13 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is soft as stocks opened sharply lower on Friday; the major averages recouped some of the losses but still finished firmly in the red.

The Dow shed 177.26 points or 0.57 percent to finish at 30,814.26, while the NASDAQ sank 114.14 points or 0.87 percent to end at 12,998.50 and the S&P 500 fell 27.29 points or 0.72 percent to close at 3,768.25. For the week, the Dow lost 0.9 percent and the NASDAQ and S&P both fell 1.5 percent.

The early sell-off on Wall Street reflected a negative reaction to disappointing earnings news from financial giants Wells Fargo (WFC), Citigroup (C) and JPMorgan Chase (JPM).

Negative sentiment was also generated by a report from the Commerce Department showing a continued decline in U.S. retail sales in December. But the Federal Reserve released a separate report showing U.S. industrial production jumped much more than expected last month.

Crude oil futures settled sharply lower on Friday as worries about energy demand resurfaced amid rising coronavirus cases and tighter restrictions. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for February ended down $1.21 or 2.3 percent at $52.36 a barrel.

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