April 16, 2018 / 9:41 AM / 8 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia up on strong trade data, most others down

    * Broader Asian shares down 
    * Malaysia climbs to 2-1/2 month high 
    * Indonesian trade data lifts shares 

    By Nikhil Nainan
    April 16 (Reuters) - Indonesian shares reacted positively to
trade data released on Monday, while most other Southeast Asian
markets closed lower in line with broader Asia but losses were
capped as an escalation of U.S.-led strikes over the weekend in
Syria seemed unlikely.
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 fell 0.6 percent as Chinese blue chips
skidded 1.6 percent, ahead of China's first quarter gross
domestic product (GDP) data expected on Tuesday.
    "With trade war and now Syria fatigue likely to set in ...
it's best not to get too comfortable at this point as market
risk sentiment swings will remain large this week," Stephen
Innes, head of trading APAC at Oanda, said in a note.
    Investors are showing little appetite to chase riskier
assets, he added.
    On Saturday, the United States, France and Britain launched
missiles targeting what the Pentagon said were three chemical
weapons facilities in Syria in retaliation for a suspected
poison gas attack in Douma earlier in April.
    Indonesian shares closed 0.3 percent higher after
data showed Southeast Asia's largest economy in March posted its
biggest trade surplus in six months.
    Indonesia's finance minister said the country's first
quarter GDP was likely to be 5.2 percent, which would be an
improvement on last year's growth of 5.01 percent. 
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
rose 0.4 percent.
    Malaysian shares climbed 0.6 percent to a
two-and-a-half-month high, helped by gains in financial and
telecom stocks. 
    Telekom Malaysia Bhd and Malayan Banking Bhd
 closed up 3.9 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively,
while Genting Malaysia Bhd soared 4.3 percent.
    Singapore shares fell 0.1 percent as industrials and
real estate stocks weighed on the index. Jardine Strategic
Holdings Ltd was the biggest drag, closing down 2
percent. 
    "There has been a shift in investor sentiment since late
January. After two rounds of sell-offs in 2018, investors are
cautious, added with news over the weekend of further
geopolitical uncertainty," said Jinshu Liu, director of research
at NRA Capital Pte Ltd, Singapore.
    Capitaland Ltd and City Developments Ltd
fell 1.1 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively, leading the
losses among real estate stocks.
    Philippines shares closed down 0.4 percent, as
financials dragged the index lower. 
    Heavyweights PLDT Inc and SM Investments Corp
 fell 2 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively. 
    Thailand's stock market was closed on Monday for a
holiday.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change on the day                            
 Market             Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3497.19   3501.3          -0.12
 Manila             7870.25   7899.98         -0.38
 Jakarta            6286.748  6270.327        0.26
 Kuala Lumpur       1878.76   1868.47         0.55
 Ho Chi Minh        1148.49   1157.14         -0.75
                                              
 Change on year                               
 Market             Current   End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore          3497.19   3402.92         2.77
 Bangkok            1767.17   1753.71         0.77
 Manila             7870.25   8558.42         -8.04
 Jakarta            6286.748  6355.654        -1.08
 Kuala Lumpur       1878.76   1796.81         4.56
 Ho Chi Minh        1148.49   984.24          16.69
 
 (Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan; Editing by Sunil Nair)
  
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