KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 ― Bursa Malaysia opened higher today, supported by continuous bargain hunting despite the Wall Street’s softer performance, said an analyst.

At 9.05am, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) improved 1.39 points to 1,517.15 from 1,515.76 at yesterday's close, after opening 0.72 of-a-point higher at 1,516.48.

However, market breadth was marginally lower with losers edging past gainers at 130 to 116, while 185 counters were unchanged, 1,829 untraded and 31 others suspended.

Turnover stood at 144.36 million units worth RM83.64 million.

In a note today, Malacca Securities Sdn Bhd said it expects profit-taking to emerge in the local bourse due to the downtrend on the Wall Street, following the United States Federal Reserve's confirmation of the upcoming interest rate increase and continuous bond tapering, moving forward.

“On a side note, the Festive Season Maximum Price Control Scheme for the Chinese New Year may impact the poultry and consumer-related sectors,” it said.

On sectors in focus, the brokerage firm expects trading interest to persist in the commodity-related sectors such as plantation and energy stocks, as the crude palm oil and crude oil prices remained firm.

“Bargain hunting activities may still be seen in the technology sector as most of them are in the oversold position,” it said.

Among the heavyweights, Maybank and CIMB were flat at RM8.30 and RM5.26, respectively, Petronas Chemicals added six sen to RM8.98 and IHH Healthcare gained four sen to RM6.40, while Public Bank fell one sen to RM4.19.

As for the actives, Dataprep Holdings rose eight sen to 64.5 sen, Pertama Digital inched up half-a-sen to 66 sen and Dagang Nexchange added one sen to 95.5 sen.

On the index board, FBM ACE increased 1.35 points to 6,085.36, FBM 70 improved 10.24 points to 13,443.51, FBM Emas Index expanded 10.18 points to 10,898.30, FBMT 100 Index strengthened 9.35 points to 10,606.18, and FBM Emas Shariah Index climbed 17.85 points to 11,588.05.

Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index expanded 2.98 points to 15,749.87, the Industrial Products and Services Index was 0.36 of-a-point better at 200.65, while the Plantation Index increased 3.31 points to 6,601.29. ― Bernama