KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 30 — Bursa Malaysia had a tough start today as early general election calls are growing stronger, leading to further selldown in the local market.
As at 9.05am, the benchmark index TSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) dropped 7.31 points to 1,487.89 after opening 0.89 of-a-point lower at 1,493.31.
Losers overtook gainers 320 to 102, while 273 counters were unchanged, 1454 untraded and 80 others suspended.
Total volume stood at 388.31 million worth RM150.01 million.
Energy emerged as the biggest laggard as it declined 1.34 per cent to 655.74 points as the benchmark Brent crude slipped to below US$40 per barrel.
The market was closed yesterday for the Maulidul Rasul celebration.
An analyst said the calls, which gained intensity yesterday, raised caution among investors that the 15th general election could be held early next year once the Covid-19 dust has settled.
“There is actually two sides of the coin in this matter. The bright side is the political uncertainty will be brought to a stop, while on another side, it would pause investors confidence longer, leading to a slower economic recovery,” she said.
The United Malays National Organisation (Umno) last night said the next general election should be held once Covid-19 is brought under control, with the minimum number of cases, in order to get a fresh mandate from the people to establish a stable government.
On the technical forefront, the analyst said a bearing momentum is persistent in the local market with the benchmark KLCI expected to dip further down to test the level of 1,450 with the immediate resistance of 1,500.
“The oversold position will continue until a fresh catalyst is provided,” she said.
On the global front, the US presidential election on November 3 will also impact the market’s direction.
On heavyweight performance, Petronas Chemicals down 10 sen to RM5.85, Axiata and Top Glove both shed eight sen to RM2.96 and RM8.70, respectively, while Public Bank dropped 12 sen to RM15.56.
Petronas Chemicals and Public Bank also led the losers counters at the morning session.
On actives, tech counters dominated with Vivocom adding half-a-sen to 50 sen, Dataprep added 1.5 sen to 21 sen.
As for gainers, British American Tobacco rose 21 sen to RM10.16 on better quarterly earnings performance.
On the index board, the FBM Emas Index erased 53.60 points to 10,767.03, the FBMT 100 Index was 53.06 points lower at 10,578.79 and the FBM Emas Shariah Index declined 68.52 points to 12,909.83.
The FBM 70, meanwhile, slipped 75.56 points to 14,168.58 and the FBM ACE was 49.61 points weaker at 9,770.93.
The Financial Services Index inched down 42.32 points to 12,218.49, the Industrial Products and Services Index was 1.05 point lower at 142.79, and the Plantation Index bucked the trend to raise 2.33 points to 6,924.89. — Bernama