August 13, 2019 / 5:11 AM / 2 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Rising global tensions drag markets, Singapore cuts GDP forecast

    By Soumyajit Saha
    Aug 13 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets fell on
Tuesday, following a major Wall Street selloff as global trade
tensions ramped up amid a stalled U.S.-Sino trade deal and
further tariffs, which kick in on Sept. 1.  
    A global contagion from protests in Hong Kong, Argentine
President Mauricio Macri's primary election defeat, and the
U.S.-China tariff spat drove all three major U.S. stock indexes
sharply lower.
    U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday accused China of
"...hoping for a Democrat to win (the 2020 elections) so they
could continue the great ripoff of America". Trump had earlier
said talks with China were still on, but any immediate trade
deal was off the table. 
    "The slump in Asian equities is suggestive that markets are
bracing for more backlash from trade risks," Mizuho Bank said in
a note to clients.
    Local sentiment was also soured after Hong Kong's airport,
the busiest cargo airport in the world, halted operations on
Monday, blaming anti-government protests that have occupied many
of the city's locations, including its airport.
    The closure was widely read as a sign of escalation in the
extended protests in one of Asia's most important trading hubs,
stirring fears of further Chinese intervention that could
deteriorate trading confidence.
    In the region, Singapore shares dropped, with
industrial stocks weighing the most on the index.
    The city-state cut its full-year forecast range for its
gross domestic product, flagging risks like the Sino-U.S. tariff
war, Brexit and Hong Kong's political situation.
    "Singapore's sobering downward assessment of 2019 growth
outlook is perhaps the most telling sign that the world is now
bracing for worse; even as it hopes for better," the Mizuho Bank
note added.
     Philippine stocks fell the most in the region,
dragged down by financials. 
    Real estate company Ayala Land lost 4%, while
lender Bank of the Philippine Islands was down 4.3%. 
    Malaysian shares also fell, hurt by losses in the
banking and resources sectors.
    Lender Public Bank Bhd lost 2.7%, while chemicals
producer Petronas Chemical Group Bhd was down 3.4%.
    Markets in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippine and
Thailand were closed on Monday on account of public holidays.   
  
    

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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0345 GMT
 STOCK MARKETS                                    
 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3142.99   3168.94         -0.82
 Bangkok                1636.62   1650.64         -0.85
 Manila                 7680.97   7854.39         -2.21
 Jakarta                6220.811  6250.595        -0.48
 Kuala Lumpur           1596.14   1615.05         -1.17
 Ho Chi Minh            970.87    975.31          -0.46
                                                  
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3142.99   3068.76         2.42
 Bangkok                1636.62   1563.88         4.65
 Manila                 7680.97   7,466.02        2.88
 Jakarta                6220.811  6,194.50        0.42
 Kuala Lumpur           1596.14   1690.58         -5.59
 Ho Chi Minh            970.87    892.54          8.78
 

 (Reporting by Soumyajit Saha; editing by Uttaresh.V)
  
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