SE Asia Stocks - Malaysia hits record high; Indonesia down on political move

Mon May 19, 2014 7:13am EDT

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May 19 (Reuters) - Malaysian shares hit a record high on
Monday, helped by foreign inflows after the country's economic
growth came in above expectations in the first quarter, but
Indonesia retreated due to a surprise political move by the
country's second largest party. 
    Malaysia's stock index hit a record high of 1,889.47
in intraday trade and ended at an all-time closing high of
1,887.07, surpassing the previous peak close of 1,883.34 hit on
Friday.
    Kuala Lumpur enjoyed foreign inflows of $70.37 million on
Monday, as investors snapped up risky assets after the country's
annual economic growth showed a pickup in the first quarter to
its fastest in more than a year. 
    However, Malaysian Airline System Bhd (MAS) shares
fell 18.4 percent to a record low on Monday, its second day of
sharp declines. The airline said on Thursday that a sharp drop
in passenger traffic was likely to prevent it from returning to
profit this year. 
    Jakarta's Composite Index closed 0.3 percent weaker,
surrendering an early gain of 1 percent, after the country's
second largest party, Golkar, said it would support former
general Prabowo Subianto in July's presidential election. 
    Many had expected Golkar to support front-runner Joko
"Jokowi" Widodo. 
    The market traded higher earlier after Jokowi named Golkar
senior party official and former vice president Jusuf Kalla as
his running mate. 
    With the deadline for filing nominations close, investors
were cautious, watching each move of the political parties, said
John Teja, director of Jakarta-based broker Ciptadana
Securities.
    Other Southeast Asian markets traded slightly firmer despite
the rest of Asia being led down by China on concerns of slower
growth in the world's second-biggest economy. 
    Thailand's SET index rose 0.4 percent to its highest
close since May 2 with $16.73 million in foreign inflows despite
data showing the country's economy shrank more than expected as
exports remained weak and domestic activity was battered by
months of political unrest. 
    Philippines outperformed the region with 0.8 percent
gain, while Singapore ended steady. Vietnam 
recovered from early losses to close 0.7 percent firmer on
foreign buying. 
          
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change on day
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   425.93        423.90       +0.48
 Singapore          3262.43       3262.59        0.00
 Kuala Lumpur       1887.07       1883.34       +0.20
 Bangkok            1410.63       1405.26       +0.38
 Jakarta            5015.00       5031.57       -0.33
 Manila             6870.90       6817.71       +0.78
 Ho Chi Minh         533.04        529.49       +0.67
 
 Change on year
 Market             Current       End 2013    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   425.93        388.37       +9.67
 Singapore          3262.43       3167.43       +3.00
 Kuala Lumpur       1887.07       1866.96       +1.08
 Bangkok            1410.63       1298.71       +8.62
 Jakarta            5015.00       4274.18      +17.33
 Manila             6870.90       5889.83      +16.66
 Ho Chi Minh         533.04        504.63       +5.63
 
* The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a
highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia,
Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.    
($1 = 3.2340 Malaysian Ringgits)
($1 = 32.5100 Thai Baht)

 (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)
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