September 4, 2014 / 8:30 AM / in 3 years

SE Asia Stocks-Most weaker, profit-taking takes toll

BANGKOK, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets
mostly retreated on Thursday as investors cashed in on recent
gainers amid a cautious mood ahead of a European Central Bank
meeting, but upbeat consumer confidence data lifted selected
consumer stocks in Thailand and Indonesia.
    Consumer confidence in Thailand rose for a fourth month in
August, suggesting consumption may improve, while Indonesia's
consumers were more optimistic in August due to an increase in
government job openings.  
    In Bangkok, shares seen as beneficiaries of rising
consumption such as Kasikornbank outperformed.
    Profit-taking hit Airports of Thailand which
touched a record high on Wednesday amid optimism about the
outlook on the tourism sector and expectations of a possible
relaxation of martial law in some tourist areas. 
    The broader SET index was down 0.3 percent at 0805
GMT after four days of gains. 
    Speculation on the ECB's stimulus measure, which could lead
to foreign fund inflows, lifted sentiment across Southeast Asia
this week. 
    Strategists at broker Maybank Kim Eng Securities in Bangkok
expected profit-taking to further hit share markets.
    "If the ECB injects the new stimulus measure, we expect the
sell on fact in worldwide markets, especially the EU and U.S.
markets. If the ECB launches no new measure, markets will be
disappointed, leading to market correction," they wrote in a
    Indonesia's key index inched down 0.1 percent after
hitting a record closing level of 5,224.14 the previous day.
    Shares of United Tractors fell after four days of
gains, while telecoms and banks such as Telkom Indonesia
 and Bank Negara Indonesia led among gainers.
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 Change at 0805 GMT
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   446.26        447.36       -0.25
 Singapore          3338.55       3348.77       -0.31
 Kuala Lumpur       1864.04       1864.87       -0.04
 Bangkok            1578.76       1583.27       -0.28
 Jakarta            5216.93       5224.14       -0.14 
 Manila             7204.11       7206.02       -0.03 
 Ho Chi Minh         640.22        640.75       -0.08
* 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 Kaweewit Kaewjinda and Viparat Jantraprap;
Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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