KLCI up 0.7% on O&G shares as export counters also rise

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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 22): The FBM KLCI closed 11.66 points or 0.66 % higher at 1,781.75 on gains in oil and gas (O&G) stocks including Petronas Gas Bhd and SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd, while export-based counters also rose.

According to Jupiter Securities chief marketing strategist Benny Lee, “O&G players are expecting crude oil prices to stay at current levels, and investors are slowly bullish on O&G stocks as they have started to rebound.

"Besides that, the weak ringgit (at 3.6035 against the US dollar) had also driven up export-driven counters” Lee told theedgemarkets.com. Against the Singapore dollar, the ringgit was traded at 2.7018.

A notable Bursa Malaysia gainer was semiconductor manufacturer Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd (MPI) which had posted a sparkling set of result for 2QFY15.

MPI soared as much as 34 sen or 7% to RM5.52 before closing at RM5.50 following the release of the results.

MPI said net profit rose to RM24.06 million in the second quarter ended December 31, 2014 from RM8.09 million a year earlier. First half profit was higher at RM43.97 million

Across Bursa Malaysia, the market saw 2.58 billion shares valued at RM2.87 billion traded.

There were 664 gainers against 253 decliners while 288 counters remained unchanged.

Top gainers included Petronas Gas and British American Tobacco (M) Bhd

Decliners were led by PPB Group Bhd and CIMB Group Holdings Bhd

The most actively traded stock today was Sumatec Resources Bhd.

Abroad, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 0.7%, Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.28% while South Korea’s KOSPI fell 0.02%.

According to a Reuters report, Asian shares held near eight-week highs today as investors bet on the likely size and scope of a bond-buying programme the European Central Bank is poised to unveil later in the day as it attempts to revive the flagging euro zone economy.