KUALA LUMPUR (March 4): Bursa Malaysia ended lower on Friday (March 4) due to profit-taking activities across the board amid the weaker regional market sentiment on reports that Russia has seized a Ukrainian nuclear power plant, the largest in Europe, a dealer said.
Markets in the region were also spooked by earlier reports that a building in the nuclear complex had caught fire during fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces, although the latest report is that the fire had been extinguished.
At 5pm, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) fell 14.6 points to 1,603.94, from 1,618.54 at Thursday (March 3)’s close.
The barometer index, which opened 2.54 points lower at 1,616.00, moved between 1,598.17 and 1,616.28 throughout the trading session.
The broader market was negative, with decliners beating gainers 849 to 239, while 341 counters were unchanged, 811 untraded, and nine others suspended.
Turnover improved to 3.44 billion units valued at RM3.29 billion, from Thursday’s 3.43 billion units valued at RM3.76 billion.
Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd vice-president of equity research Thong Pak Leng said the Russia-Ukraine crisis has continued to hurt market sentiment, following fighting at Europe’s largest nuclear power station in Ukraine, with reports that a building had caught fire and that Russia has seized control of the plant.
“Investors are also worried that sanctions imposed on Russia, along with the subsequent surge in oil prices, could derail economic recovery even as the US Federal Reserve prepares to begin raising interest rates,” he told Bernama.
Despite the market correction, the FBM KLCI remains well supported to stay above the 1,600 level, he added.
Among the heavyweights, Maybank lost 12 sen to RM9.0, Public Bank eased one sen to RM4.42, Petronas Chemicals gained four sen to RM10.04, Press Metal stayed at RM7.22, and IHH Healthcare rose three sen to RM6.60.
Of the actives, SMTrack slid half-a-sen to 19.5 sen, Dagang NeXchange shed six sen to RM1.02 and China Automobile gained one sen to two sen.
On the index board, FBM ACE was down 168.53 points to 5,508.06, FBM 70 reduced 250.90 points to 13,187.19, FBM Emas Index fell 136.16 points to 11,341.51, FBMT 100 Index slipped 123.061 points to 11,031.13, and FBM Emas Shariah Index contracted 162.28 points to 12,079.37.
Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index gave up 114.25 points to 16,393.23, the Industrial Products and Services Index was 1.10 points weaker at 213.22, and the Plantation Index reduced 235.08 points to 8,547.51.
The Main Market volume expanded to 3.44 billion shares worth RM3.29 billion, from 2.55 billion shares worth RM3.53 billion on Thursday.
Warrants turnover rose to 374.88 million units worth RM41.36 million, compared with 326.85 million units worth RM37.66 million on Thursday.
The ACE Market volume widened to 689.71 million shares valued at RM213.64 million, versus 547.28 million shares valued at RM186.60 million previously.
Consumer products and services counters accounted for 268.13 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (751.93 million), construction (109.24 million), technology (295.17 million), SPAC (nil), financial services (85.86 million), property (165.26 million), plantation (245.81 million), REITs (7.69 million), closed/fund (86,500), energy (275.41 million), healthcare (70.51 million), telecommunications and media (30.15 million), transportation and logistics (34.22 million), and utilities (33.70 million).