SE Asia Stocks -Most weaker amid Iraq concerns; Singapore near 3-wk low

Tue Jun 17, 2014 3:43am EDT

BANGKOK, June 17 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stocks mostly
fell on Tuesday as investors trimmed risk holdings amid concerns
over the Iraq situation and rising crude oil prices, while
shares in Singapore hit their lowest in nearly three weeks on
disappointing export data.
    Brent crude futures, which held near $113 per barrel as
concerns over oil supply persisted, weighed on shares of airline
firms such as Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways
International and Cebu Air. 
    In Singapore, the key Straits Times Index was down 
0.7 percent at 3,269.28, the lowest since May 23.
    Singapore's exports unexpectedly fell in May on weak
shipments of electronics and pharmaceuticals to its key markets,
indicating the city-state may not be benefiting yet from a
recovery in developed economies. 
    The Philippine main index dropped almost 1 percent to
6,696.07, the lowest since June 2.
    Other markets in Southeast Asia were nearly flat, with Kuala
Lumpur's composite index little changed at 1,870.94.
Analysts at Maybank IB Research said Malaysia is the only net
oil exporter within ASEAN 5-major and is a saver spot.
    They maintain their 2014 target for the index at 1,940,
saying the year will be mildly positive for the plantation
sector with more for the oil and gas services providers if oil
prices are sustained at high levels.
    "Being a net oil exporter, coupled with the fact that around
one-third of the government's revenue is derived from the oil &
gas sector, higher crude oil prices are a positive for Malaysia
from trade and budget perspectives," they wrote in a report.
    In Bangkok, the SET index inched up 0.1 percent,
helped by gains in consumer shares such as CP All as
the ruling military government works on reviving the domestic
economy.
    The Bank of Thailand is expected to keep its policy interest
rate steady in a meeting on Wednesday, with less pressure to
trim its interest rate further.
    "While the efficacy of fiscal policy under the military
government (or the interim government said to be in August) is
still uncertain, it is clear that it will be pro-growth," broker
DBS said in a report.
    According to a Reuters poll, the central bank will likely
leave its key interest rate unchanged at 2.0 percent, in its
first policy review since a military coup, with an end to
political gridlock and the junta's spending plans expected to
support the economy. 
        
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change at 0653 GMT
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   424.32        425.98       -0.39
 Singapore          3269.28       3290.26       -0.65
 Kuala Lumpur       1870.94       1871.58       -0.03
 Bangkok            1473.80       1471.85       +0.13
 Jakarta            4884.17       4885.46       -0.03
 Manila             6696.07       6758.45       -0.92
 Ho Chi Minh         571.74        572.37       -0.11
 * The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a
highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia,
Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.    

 (Reporting by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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