KUALA LUMPUR,. Bursa Malaysia opened lower in the first trading session today, giving up gains from last Friday, as the 2019 Budget raised some concerns among investors.
At 9.05am, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) lost 11.52 points at 1,702.35 from Friday’s close of 1,713.87.
The index opened 6.2 points better at 1,720.07.
Kenanga Investment Bank Bhd said following the government’s indication a wider fiscal deficit in 2018 than that targeted by the previous administration, rating agencies have voiced concerns over the level of Malaysia’s national debts.
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, in presenting the 2019 Budget, announced a fiscal deficit of 3.7 per cent to Gross Domestic Product for 2018, as against 2.8 per cent targeted by the Barisan Nasional administration previously.
Fitch Ratings, in a statement, said Malaysia’s public debt is high “relative to rating peers”, and a further increase in debt over the medium-term could have a rating impact.
On a different note, it was reported that Lim is meeting with rating agencies in Singapore to state Malaysia’s rationale for the decisions taken in 2019 Budget.
On Bursa Malaysia, gainers led losers 155 to 132 with 165 counters unchanged, 1,388 untraded and 18 others suspended.
Volume stood at 169.20 million units valued at RM192.71 million.
Among heavyweights, Maybank declined six sen to RM9.34, PBBank added two sen to RM24.64, Tenaga climbed 10 sen to RM14.80 and PChem rose 12 sen to RM9.60.
For actives, GenM lost RM1.36 to RM3.18, Vivocom and Orion were both flat at 2.5 sen and 10.5 sen respectively, while Velesto reduced half-a-sen to 25 sen.
The FBM Emas Shariah Index increased 82.78 points to 11,973.0, the FBM Ace Index rose 13.90 points to 5,034.45 and the FBM 70 improved 39.85 points to 13,775.56.
The FBM Emas Index was 51.11 points lower at 11,806.54 and the FBMT 100 Index shed 52.50 points to 11,644.11.
Sector-wise, the Plantation Index bagged 43.13 points to 7,432.95, the Industrial Products and Services Index was 1.25 points better at 174.37 and the Financial Services Index was 34.21 points stronger at 17,308.21. — Bernama