SE Asia Stocks-Gain as investors look past Fed

Last Updated: Mon, Jun 19, 2017 11:40 hrs

By Nicole Pinto June 19 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose on Monday, in line with broader Asia, underpinned by improved risk sentiment as investors shifted focus away from the U.S. Federal Reserve after an interest rate increase last week. However, markets also positioned themselves for the UK's negotiations to exit the European Union, set to start in Brussels on Monday. "I think risk-on bias is coming back from the precipitation of central bank events," said Taye Shim, head of research at Jakarta-based Mirae Asset Sekuritas. "(Major) central bank events are over, and ECB (European Central Bank) and Federal Reserve did not provide much of a surprise to the market, which was actually a relief. The ECB and Federal Reserve's forward looking guidance was in line with expectations." Philippine shares led the gainers in the region, rising 0.6 percent, lifted by the industrial sector. "(Rise in Philippine shares) are more in anticipation of the tax reform measures. Much sooner than that is the state of the nation address coming up mid-July, and then Congress will open and hopefully will immediately pass the tax reform measures," said Joseph Roxas, an analyst with Manila-based Eagle Equities. The Philippines' lower house of Congress passed the much-anticipated tax reform bill on May 31, aimed at generating revenue to fund a multi-billion dollar infrastructure program that is key to the government's economic agenda. Singapore shares edged up 0.3 percent, with financials making up nearly half of the gains on the index. Index heavyweights United Overseas Bank and DBS Group Holdings gained 0.9 and 0.6 percent, respectively. Thai shares rose 0.3 percent, with Airports of Thailand hitting a record high. Indonesian shares edged up 0.2 percent, with media company Elang Mahkota Teknologi gaining 18.5 percent. Meanwhile, Malaysian shares fell 0.2 percent, with telecommunication company falling 0.8 percent and casino operator Genting Bhd down 0.7 percent. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS; Change at 0457 GMT STOCK MARKETS Change on the day Market Current previous Pct Move close Singapore 3242.35 3231.44 0.34 Bangkok 1581.8 1576.58 0.33 Manila 7926.51 7882.22 0.56 Jakarta 5734.978 5723.636 0.20 Kuala Lumpur 1787.62 1791.31 -0.21 Ho Chi Minh 763.45 761.24 0.29 Change so far this year Market Current End 2016 Pct Move Singapore 3242.35 2880.76 12.55 Bangkok 1581.8 1542.94 2.52 Manila 7926.51 6840.64 15.87 Jakarta 5734.978 5296.711 8.27 Kuala Lumpur 1787.62 1641.73 8.89 Ho Chi Minh 763.45 664.87 14.83 (Reporting by Nicole Pinto in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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