SE Asia Stocks-Malaysia drops over 1%, Singapore flat

    * Vietnam stocks set to gain 7.8% in 2019
    * Malaysian shares fall; Singapore flat
    * Other markets closed for New Year's Eve

    By Shruti Sonal
    Dec 31 (Reuters) - Malaysian shares fell more than 1% on
Tuesday, dragged by banking and consumer stocks, while Singapore
erased gains in thin year-end trading. 
    Broader Asia was down 0.4%, as investors
booked profits on the last trading day of the decade. Most
Southeast Asian benchmarks were poised to end the year higher.

    Singapore's market shut early on Tuesday, while most other
markets in the region are closed on account of New Year's Eve. 
    Malaysian benchmark marked its worst session in more
than a month, with all sectors trading in the red. The index
recorded losses of 5.4% for the year. 
    Public Bank Bhd fell 1.7%, while Sime Darby
Plantation, the world's largest oil palm planter by
land size, slid 2%. 
    "While market volumes are predictably light, investors
continue to strike a year-end cautionary tone as December
optimism is gradually giving way to 2020's uncertainty," Stephen
Innes, chief Asia market strategist at AxiTrader, said in a
    On the trade front, White House's trade adviser said on
Monday the U.S.-China Phase 1 trade deal would likely be signed
in the next week, but said a confirmation would come from
President Donald Trump or the U.S. Trade Representative.

    Any signs of easing trade tensions between Washington and
Beijing are a major boon for Southeast Asian economies, which
count China as their top trading partner.  
    Meanwhile, data on Tuesday showed factory activity in China,
expanded for a second straight month in December, as production
quickened and export orders rose.
    Singapore's benchmark index was flat, but gained 4.9%
for the year. Industrial stocks offset gains in financials, with
Jardine Strategic Holdings slipping 1.6%. 
    The Vietnam index fell 0.3%, but was on track to post
a 7.8% gain for 2019, outperforming its peers by a vast margin. 
    Financial and consumer stocks accounted for most of the
losses on the benchmark, with Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp
 falling 0.9%.

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 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3221.09   3222.44         -0.04
 Kuala Lumpur           1597.97   1615.67         -1.10
 Ho Chi Minh            962.07    965.03          -0.31
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3221.09   3068.76         4.96
 Bangkok                1579.84   1563.88         1.02
 Manila                 7815.26   7,466.02        4.68
 Jakarta                6299.539  6,194.50        1.70
 Kuala Lumpur           1597.97   1690.58         -5.48
 Ho Chi Minh            962.07    892.54          7.79

 (Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)