SE Asia Stocks-Muted; Singapore set to extend losses

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 07, 2017 10:00 hrs

By Nikhil Nainan Dec 7 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets traded within a tight range on Thursday as uncertainty over U.S. government policies kept risk sentiment in check, with Singapore set to extend the previous session's sharp decline. Asian markets remained tentative after Wednesday's slump, with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan hovering around a near two-month low. Investors are looking to final tax reform legislation in the United States, where a potential U.S. government shutdown looms if Congress fails to agree on a spending package. Singapore shares fell 0.4 percent, after retreating 1.2 percent the previous day, on course for a sixth losing session in seven. "Yesterday was quite bad… I guess it was part of the broader selloff. Probably in part following the U.S. tax reforms passing the Senate. So I think now it's just waiting for the next catalyst, which is the Senate and House having to reconcile their tax bill," said Joel Ng, an analyst at KGI Securities in Singapore. Losses in industrials and financial stocks outweighed strong gains in real estate stocks, with City Developments and CapitaLand Commercial Trust rising over 2 percent. "They are probably range-bound at this level, so I think you are starting to see investors coming in, in view of the positive outlook over the next few years for property," Ng added. Meanwhile, Philippine stocks inched up 0.3 percent, led by gains in telecom and energy stocks, with PLDT Inc and Semirara Mining and Power Corp rising 2.2 percent and 7 percent, respectively. Malaysian shares rose 0.1 percent, with Sime Darby Plantation rising 4.3 percent. Indonesia and Vietnam were marginally lower, while Thai shares edged higher. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: CHANGE AT 0414 GMT Change at 0414 GMT Market Current Previous close Pct Move Singapore 3383.77 3397.21 -0.40 Bangkok 1699.18 1694.39 0.28 Manila 8149.89 8129.62 0.25 Jakarta 6028.925 6035.508 -0.11 Kuala Lumpur 1719.84 1718.33 0.09 Ho Chi Minh 944.06 947.64 -0.38 Change so far this year Market Current End 2016 Pct Move Singapore 3383.77 2880.76 17.46 Bangkok 1699.18 1542.94 10.13 Manila 8149.89 6840.64 19.14 Jakarta 6028.925 5296.711 13.82 Kuala Lumpur 1719.84 1641.73 4.76 Ho Chi Minh 944.06 664.87 41.99 (Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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