SE Asia Stocks-Thai shares retreat on political crisis; Malaysia rises

Mon Dec 9, 2013 1:45am EST

BANGKOK, Dec 9 (Reuters) - Thai stocks gave up early gains
and fell on Monday as anti-government protesters pressed ahead
with mass demonstrations to oust Prime Minister Yingluck
Shinawatra and her administration, while Malaysia rose to near a
record high, backed by strong trade data.
    The key SET index had risen 1.2 percent in early
trade after Yingluck called a snap election, but dropped when it
became clear that her move had failed to defuse the tensions.
 
    The benchmark was down 0.12 percent at 1,359.99, with shares
of Central Plaza Hotel Pcl losing 2 percent, among
major decliners.
    Tourism related stocks such as Airports of Thailand 
and Thai Airways International trimmed their gains
after rallying in early trade amid short covering buys.
    Analysts cited profit-taking, saying investors wanted to
reduce risks ahead of a market holiday on Tuesday.
    "We saw a brief positive reaction to the house dissolution
news and strong flows of short covering buys in early hours,"
said Pichai Lertsupongkij, head of investment advisory services
at broker Thanachart Securities.
    "Overall, political pressure remains and the protests could
continue. I think investors would be more cautious on the
outlook of domestic economy and earnings of listed firms," said
Pichai. Support for the main index was seen at 1,345, he said.
    Malaysia's main index rose 0.6 percent to 1,838.10,
hovering near a record high of 1,840.12 hit last week, led by a
2.4 percent rise in shares of Petronas Chemicals Group
, the top percentage gainer on the index.
    Malaysia's exports in October rose by a
stronger-than-expected 9.6 percent from a year earlier,
government data showed on Friday, lifting the index and boosting
its gain on the week to almost 1 percent, the region's
outperformer. 
    Jakarta's Composite Index was up 0.3 percent at
4,195.06, trimming some of the 3.3 percent drop over the past
four sessions.
    Jakarta-based Trimegah said a technical indicator signalled
a rebound for the day, with the index seen moving in a trading
range of 4,158-4,202.
    Other markets were mixed, with Singapore stocks 
trading a tad higher, Vietnam rising 0.5 percent, partly
helped by buying of an exchange-traded fund. Shares in the
Philippines eased 0.4 percent. 

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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change at 0600 GMT
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   394.30        392.80       +0.38
 Singapore          3116.67       3114.17       +0.08
 Kuala Lumpur       1838.10       1826.95       +0.61
 Bangkok            1359.99       1361.57       -0.12
 Jakarta            4195.06       4180.79       +0.34
 Manila             5995.06       6014.94       -0.33
 Ho Chi Minh         512.31        510.12       +0.43
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