Manila, Jakarta set new record Thai at 19-year high

Last Updated: Wed, Feb 20, 2013 21:10 hrs

Southeast Asian stock markets mostly gained on Wednesday, with the Philippines and Indonesian stock markets hitting a record high, while Thailand ended at a 19-year peak as an improving global economic outlook helped boost investor appetite for risky assets. The Philippine index, which saw a net foreign inflow of $7.5 million, hit a fresh all-time high of 6,690.00 points, before ending 0.42 per cent up at 6,648.57, surpassing its previous record close of 6,632.56 on Tuesday.

Indonesia gained 0.7 per cent to hit a new record high close of 4,634.45 with a foreign inflow of $28.1 million, led by property shares, Reuters data showed.

Bangkok’s SET index jumped 0.95 per cent to 1,546.64, to hit a 19-year closing high after the Thai central bank expectedly maintained its policy interest rate and said the economy could grow more than forecast this year.

Singapore ended 0.4 per cent firmer at 3,308.89, while Vietnam, the region’s smallest bourse and the best performer this year, gained 0.8 per cent at 494.83.

Bucking the trend, Malaysia ended 0.1 per cent weaker at 1613.33 with a net foreign outflow of $6.93 million, the stock market data showed. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed 0.8 per cent as of 12:33 p.m. in Tokyo. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average rose 0.8 per cent and Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures were little changed. Silver and copper both rallied 0.4 per cent while soybeans advanced 0.6 per cent. The euro gained 0.2 per cent to $1.3413 and the yen fluctuated. South Korea’s won increased 0.4 per cent to 1,076.60 per dollar. New Zealand’s dollar sank 0.7 per cent to 84.06 US cents after the nation’s central bank said it was prepared to intervene to weaken the currency.

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