July 16, 2019 / 3:47 AM / a month ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most gain on prospects of policy easing

    * Singapore rises ahead of exports data on Wed
    * Philippines extends gains to 16-month high
    * Thailand closed for holiday

    By Niyati Shetty
    July 16 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose
on Tuesday on expectations of further monetary policy easing by
global central banks, while concerns over palm oil exports to
the European Union weighed on Malaysian shares.
    Singapore shares added as much as 0.4% ahead of key
non-oil domestic exports (NODX) data due on Wednesday. 
    After a vastly weaker-than-expected second-quarter growth
reading last week, investors will watch the island's export data
for any further signs of weakness in the economy.
    "The sustained deep declines in NODX depressing GDP growth
are bringing the Monetary Authority of Singapore closer to
reducing or even flattening the SGD-NEER appreciation path,
possibly even earlier than the October meeting," ING said in a
note on Friday.
    Lender DBS Group Holdings Ltd advanced 0.7% and
conglomerate Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd gained
    Philippine stocks extended gains, rising 0.6% to a
16-month high, on rate-cut hopes.  
    The central bank governor, Benjamin Diokno, said the bank
had greater liberty to ease policy in the third quarter due to
easing inflation and a dovish U.S. Federal Reserve, the
Philippine Star reported here
 on Monday. 
    Meanwhile, a likely U.S. rate cut by the end of this month
is still under the spotlight, as investors await U.S. retail
sales data due later in the day and more corporate earnings
results to further gauge the health of the economy.
    Vietnam shares rose 0.6%, boosted by financial and
real estate stocks. 
    Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam
 added 2.1%, while Vinhomes JSC gained 0.7%. 
    Malaysian shares declined as much as 0.3%, with palm
oil giant Sime Darby Bhd shedding 0.9%, while Kuala
Lumpur Kepong lost 0.4%.   
    The world's second-biggest palm oil producer and exporter
after Indonesia said it would file a complaint to the World
Trade Organisation by November to challenge a move by the
European Union to phase out palm oil from being used in
transport fuels in the bloc.
    Indonesian shares fell 0.3%, dragged by the
financial sector. Insurer PT Sinar Mas Multiartha Tbk
and lender Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk PT were down 8%
and 1.8%, respectively.
    Thai financial markets were closed for a holiday. 
For Asian Companies click;  

 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3357.74   3347.95         0.29
 Manila                 8416      8365.29         0.61
 Jakarta                6401.726  6418.234        -0.26
 Kuala Lumpur           1668.93   1672.37         -0.21
 Ho Chi Minh            977.94    972.53          0.56
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3357.74   3068.76         9.42
 Manila                 8416      7,466.02        12.72
 Jakarta                6401.726  6,194.50        3.35
 Kuala Lumpur           1668.93   1690.58         -1.28
 Ho Chi Minh            977.94    892.54          9.57

 (Reporting by Niyati Shetty in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
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