April 30, 2020 / 4:17 AM / a month ago

SE Asia Stocks-Climb on coronavirus treatment progress, higher oil prices

    * Singapore at near two-week peak, set for best day since
April 14
    * DBS Group at 7-week peak after bank retains quarterly
    * Indonesia hits highest level since April 15

    By Nikhil Subba
    April 30 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets climbed
on Thursday as progress in the development of a COVID-19
treatment and higher oil prices spurred a rally.
    Singapore shares jumped as much as 2.3% to a near
two-week peak and led gains in the region, underpinned by a jump
in shares of DBS Group Holdings.
    Southeast Asia's biggest lender advanced 4.7% to a
seven-week peak after retaining its quarterly dividend, despite
a 29% drop in Q1 profit, even as banks across the world defer or
cut dividends to save cash.
    Falling infection rates and phased reopening of economies
around the globe have boosted appetite for equities this week,
with early results from a U.S government clinical trial showing
that Gilead Sciences Inc's experimental drug remdesivir
helped certain COVID-19 patients recover more quickly.
    "The vaccine is incredibly positive news for the oil market
as it suggests a quicker recovery in global demand as oil
downstream sectors would be expected to fire up," Stephen Innes,
chief market strategist at AxiCorp, said in a note.
    Oil prices rose on Thursday on signs the U.S. crude glut is
not growing as fast as expected and that gasoline demand
battered by COVID-19 restrictions is starting to pick up.
    Stocks in Indonesia, the region's largest economy,
gained about 2.5% to hit their highest level since April 15.
    West Java, Indonesia's most populous province, hopes to ease
coronavirus social distancing restrictions in some areas and
allow some factories to reopen as infections decline.

    Information Technology company Metrodata Electronics
 rose nearly 7%, while Bank Central Asia
climbed about 5.6%.
    In Thailand, the energy sector drove the main stock index
 1.4% higher to a near eight-week peak. 
    Malaysian shares gained more than 1%, helped by
Genting Malaysia's 3.4% rise and Petronas Chemicals
Group's near 5% climb.
For Asian Companies click;  

  Change on the day                                       
  Market              Current     Previous close  Pct Move
  Singapore           2628.82     2574.73         2.10
  Bangkok             1296.71     1282.68         1.09
  Manila              5657.61     5643.97         0.24
  Jakarta             4660.821    4567.323        2.05
  Kuala Lumpur        1397.03     1380.3          1.21
 Ho Chi Minh          769.11      767.21          0.25
  Change so far in                                
  Market              Current     End 2019        Pct Move
  Singapore           2628.82     3222.83         -18.43
  Bangkok             1296.71     1579.84         -17.92
  Manila              5657.61     7,815.26        -27.61
  Jakarta             4660.821    6,299.54        -26.01
  Kuala Lumpur        1397.03     1588.76         -12.07
  Ho Chi Minh         769.11      960.99          -19.97
 (Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya
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