KUALA LUMPUR (Nikkei Markets) — Malaysia shares Tuesday extended losses as plantation stocks continued to slide, while Singapore stocks also fell dragged lower by technology stocks following overnight Wall Street selloff.
The FBM KLCI ended 0.5% lower at 1687.57. Palm oil producer IOI Corp. fell 3.1% in Malaysia after reporting a 60% plunge in fiscal first-quarter net profit. The Straits Times Index closed down 0.5% at 3053.60. Electronics manufacturing services firm Venture Corp. lost 2% in Singapore.
Overall, funds are still pulling out of Malaysia and Singapore equities largely due to weak broader market sentiment, analysts said.
“However, valuations are very cheap now for Singapore stocks” with dividend yield of 4.6%, said KGI Securities’ Head of Singapore Equities Research Joel Ng. “It’s a matter of time before we see interest returns given the attractive valuations here.”
Overnight, the three major equity indexes fell more than 2% with the technology heavy Nasdaq Composite sliding 2.8% after Apple tumbled amid concerns over weak demand for iPhones. Apple suppliers Lumentum and Japan Display both cut their earnings forecasts.
The global selloff in technology companies also affected Malaysia and Singapore, home to some Apple suppliers and semiconductor exporters. The FTSE ST Technology Index and Bursa Malaysia Technology Index fell 0.8% and 1.2% respectively.
In Singapore, consumer electronics firm Hi-P International dipped 0.6%, while hardware firm Creative Technology shed 0.2%. Semiconductor firms Inari Amertron and Globetronics Technology each fell 5.3% in Malaysia.
In commodity news, benchmark palm oil futures declined 1.2% to 2010 ringgit on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives amid concerns over rising inventory. Hap Seng Plantations Holdings fell 4.3%, while Kim Loong Resources fell 2.5%. Data out earlier this week show Malaysia’s palm oil inventory rose to 10-month high in October amid higher output and weaker exports.
In earnings news, oil-and-gas service company Dialog Group fell 1.5% in Malaysia after reporting a 28.8% annual drop in first-quarter profit in part due to absence of a one-off fair value gain.
Wilmar International advanced 0.6%. The agribusiness major said third-quarter net profit rose 10.7% on-year to $407.40 million on account of better returns from its tropical oils and oilseeds, and grains units.
Singapore Airlines edged 1.8% down ahead of the announcement of half-year earnings.
Bucking the trend, shares of digital security services Securemetric more-than-doubled on its debut on Malaysia’s stock exchange.
– Alexander Winifred and Joannah Perez
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