November 6, 2019 / 4:38 AM / 9 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most trade flat-to-low as investors await clarity on tariff roll-back

    * Thai stocks flat-to-low ahead of C.bank policy decision
    * Philippines sees worst session in over a month
    * Singapore set to rise for third consecutive session

    By Sameer Manekar
    Nov 6 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets traded
in a flat-to-low range on Wednesday, with the Philippines
leading declines after recent gains, as investors turned
cautious in anticipation of concrete details from the Sino-U.S.
trade negotiations.
    China is insisting that the United States remove tariffs
imposed in September as a part of the "phase one" Sino-U.S.
trade deal, which is expected to be signed this month at a
yet-to-be-determined location.
    Markets now await clarity on the tariff roll-back by
Washington following a report that the U.S. was considering
whether to withdraw its Sept. 1 trade duties on about $125
billion worth of Chinese goods.
    "Continued optimism that the U.S. and China are on the cusp
of sealing the 'Phase 1' trade deal is now conditional on
meeting Beijing's demand for a rollback at least of tariffs
imposed in September, over and above avoiding further tariff
escalation," Mizuho Bank said in a note.
    "Markets should be wary of the boat being rocked when
high-rolling on trade optimism."
    The Philippine bourse led declines in the region,
falling after finishing at its highest in over three months in
the previous session.
    Financials and utilities were the biggest drags, as SM Prime
Holdings lost 2.6%, while Aboitiz Power Corp
slumped 3.5% after reporting a drop in its quarterly
consolidated net income.
    Indonesian shares slipped as much as 0.7% after
posting their biggest intraday rise in over three weeks on
Tuesday.
    Index heavyweights Bank Central Asia and Unilever
Indonesia lost as much as 0.9% and 1.3%, respectively.
    An index of Jakarta's 45 most liquid stocks
declined up to 1% after posting its best day in over five months
on Tuesday.
    Financials and consumer sectors weighed on Malaysia's
benchmark index, with CIMB Group Holdings and
Sime Darby Plantation losing up to 1.1% and 2.4%,
respectively.
    The central bank stood pat on its benchmark interest rate on
Tuesday, saying it expects private sector spending to remain
resilient.
    Bucking the trend, Singapore shares were set to rise
for a third straight session, boosted by financials and
industrial companies.
    Real estate firm Hongkong Land Holdings and
industrial conglomerate Jardine Matheson Holdings were
among the top gainers, rising as much as 3.5% and 2.9% each.
    Thai index was little changed, near its two-week
high finish on Tuesday, ahead of a Bank of Thailand policy
meeting.
    The central bank is expected to hold its benchmark interest
rate later in the day, a Reuters poll showed..
    
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0431 GMT
 Change on the day                            
 Market             Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3260.03   3248.63         0.35
 Bangkok            1624.06   1626.87         -0.17
 Manila             8104.85   8216.68         -1.36
 Jakarta            6240.478  6264.152        -0.38
 Kuala Lumpur       1600.4    1606.74         -0.39
 Ho Chi Minh        1026.19   1024.34         0.18
                                              
 Change on year                               
 Market             Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore          3260.03   3068.76         6.23
 Bangkok            1624.06   1563.88         3.85
 Manila             8104.85   7466.02         8.56
 Jakarta            6240.478  6194.498        0.74
 Kuala Lumpur       1600.4    1690.58         -5.33
 Ho Chi Minh        1026.19   892.54          14.97
 
 (Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; editing by
Uttaresh.V)
  
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