March 25, 2019 / 10:18 AM / 6 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-End lower on U.S. recession fears; Vietnam sheds 2 pct

    * Philippine shares among worst performers, end 1.9 pct
weaker
    * Singapore Feb core inflation rate eases
    * Thailand Feb factory output seen rising 0.52 pct 

    By Shanima A
    March 25 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets ended
lower on Monday with cautious investors across the globe opting
for safe-haven bonds as risk assets were rattled by fears of an
impending U.S. recession, while Vietnam shares slumped to a near
one-month low.
    Concerns about the health of the world economy heightened
last week after remarks by the U.S. Federal Reserve, sending the
10-year treasury yields to the lowest since early 2018.

    Meanwhile, data showed preliminary measures of manufacturing
and services activity in the United States grew at a slower pace
this month than in February, and dampened sentiment further.
    Traditionally, an inverted yield curve - where long-term
rates slip below short-term - has signalled a recession in the
offing.
    Asian shares followed the broader global equities sell-off,
with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 dropping 1.5 percent to a one-week trough.
    Leading the declines in the region, Vietnam shares
closed 1.9 percent weaker, with real estate stocks weighing on
the index.
    Philippines shares ended 1.9 percent lower, with
losses in industrial stocks accounting for most of the declines.
    Thai shares shed 1.2 percent as the Southeast Asia's
second-largest economy awaits the final results of the country's
first election since a 2014 coup. 
    Pheu Thai party linked to self-exiled former leader Thaksin
Shinawatra won 138 seats, while military junta chief Prayuth
Chan-ocha's Palang Pracharat party got 96, but the winners of
150 of the lower house seats are still unclear, the election
commission announced after market hours.
    The overall winner of Sunday's election may not emerge for
weeks because the Election Commission has said it will announce
the official results of the final 150 seats in the 500-seat
parliament on May 9.
    On a separate note, Thailand's annual manufacturing output
in February is expected to have risen at a slightly faster pace
than in the previous month, a Reuters poll showed.
    Singapore shares fell 0.9 percent to their lowest
close in nearly two months, after data showed that the
city-state's core inflation rate for February eased to 1.5
percent from a year earlier. 
    The rate hit its lowest in nine months on expectations that
the central bank will keep monetary policy unchanged when it
meets next month.
    Indonesia stocks closed 1.8 percent weaker, dented
by losses in consumer staples and financial stocks, with Gudang
Garam Tbk PT slipping more than 4.5 percent.
    
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
    
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3182.92   3212.1          -0.91
 Bangkok                1625.91   1646.29         -1.24
 Manila                 7863.02   8013.42         -1.88
 Jakarta                6411.251  6525.274        -1.75
 Kuala Lumpur           1649.15   1666.66         -1.05
 Ho Chi Minh            970.07    988.71          -1.89
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3182.92   3068.76         3.72
 Bangkok                1625.91   1563.88         3.97
 Manila                 7863.02   7,466.02        5.32
 Jakarta                6411.251  6,194.50        3.50
 Kuala Lumpur           1649.15   1690.58         -2.45
 Ho Chi Minh            970.07    892.54          8.69
 

 (Reporting by Shanima A in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry
Jacob-Phillips)
  
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