Indonesia Stock Market May Spin Its Wheels On Thursday

The Indonesia stock market on Wednesday ended the two-day winning streak in which it had gathered almost 110 points or 1.7 percent. The Jakarta Composite Index now rests just beneath the 6,985-point plateau and it may be stuck in neutral again on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower on fears of continued policy tightening and worldwide recession. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asian markets are expected to open in similar fashion.

The JCI finished modestly lower on Wednesday following losses from the financial shares, resource tocks and cement companies.

For the day, the index sank 59.76 points or 0.85 percent to finish at 6,984.31 after trading between 6,968.30 and 7,063.26.

Among the actives, Bank Danamon shed 0.42 percent, while Bank CIMB Niaga dropped 0.99 percent, Bank Mandiri skidded 1.21 percent, Bank Negara dropped 3.55 percent, Bank Rakyat Indonesia weakened 1.37 percent, Bank Central Asia tumbled 1.96 percent, Indocement declined 1.33 percent, Indosat sank 0.75 percent, Indofood Suskes jumped 1.45 percent, United Tractors rose 0.17 percent, Energi Mega Persada surrendered 6.38 percent, Bakrie Sumatera Plantations stumbled 3.23 percent, Astra Agro Lestari retreated 1.52 percent, Aneka Tambang plunged 6.05 percent, Timah plummeted 6.92 percent, Vale Indonesia cratered 4.26 percent, Bumi Resources tanked 4.29 percent and Semen Indonesia and Kalbe Farma were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street ends up slightly negative as the major averages opened lower on Wednesday, then spent most of the day in the green before slipping back into negative territory at the close.

The Dow shed 47.12 points or 0.15 percent to finish at 30,483.13, while the NASDAQ lost 16.22 points or 0.15 percent to close at 11,053.08 and the S&P 500 dipped 4.90 points or 0.13 percent to end at 3,759.89.

The choppy trading on Wall Street came as traders reacted to Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's testimony before the Senate Banking Committee. Powell indicated the Fed plans to continue moving expeditiously to combat inflation but argued the U.S. economy is strong enough to handle tighter monetary policy.

Powell said the pace of future interest rate hikes will be dependent on incoming data and the evolving outlook for the economy and suggested the Fed will need to see "compelling evidence" that inflation is slowing before it begins to scale back its monetary policy tightening plans.

Crude oil futures tumbled on Wednesday amid concerns about the outlook for energy demand due to slowing global growth following sharp interest rate hikes by central banks. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for August ended lower by $3.33 or 3 percent at $106.19 a barrel, the lowest settlement in six weeks.

Closer to home, The central bank in Indonesia will conclude its monetary policy meeting later today and then announce its decision on interest rates. The bank is expected to keep its benchmark lending rate (3.50 percent), deposit facility rate (2.75 percent) and lending facility rate (4.25 percent) all unchanged.

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