Indonesia Stocks Hit Record, Thailand Scales Fresh 24-Year High

Indonesia's benchmark stock index broke a record on Wednesday (25/10), closing at an all-time high. (Antara Photo/Akbar Nugroho Gumay)

By : Sumeet Gaikwad | on 1:18 PM October 02, 2017
Category : Business, Markets

Most Southeast Asian stock markets climbed on Monday (02/10), with Indonesia hitting a record and Thailand scaling a fresh 24-year peak, as better-than-expected China factory data boosted investor sentiment.

China's manufacturing activity in September grew at the fastest pace since 2012 as factories cranked up output to take advantage of strong demand and high prices, easing worries of a slowdown before a key political meeting next month.

Meanwhile, a Bank of Japan survey showed big manufacturers in the country have more confidence in Japan's business conditions than they have had for a decade as a weak yen and strong global demand add momentum to the economic recovery.

"Anything that will boost economies of Japan and China will improve the sentiment in the region. Prospect of continuous improvement on the economic side will boost equities along the way," said Manny Cruz, analyst at Manila-based Asiasec Equities.

Indonesian shares rose as much as 0.6 percent to an all-time high of 5,936.138, but trimmed the gains to trade 0.4 percent higher. Unilever Indonesia was up 1.2 percent, while Bank Negara Indonesia rose over 1 percent.

Indonesia's factory activity grew for a second month in September, beating expectations, while annual inflation rate eased for a fourth month in September, official data showed.

Bank Indonesia has surprised markets by cutting its key interest rate for two months in a row to spur economic growth, predicting that inflation will remain well within its comfort range of 3-5 percent, giving it more room to ease policy.

Among other regional markets, Thai energy stocks and consumer staples helped the country's index hit a near 24-year high.

Thailand's annual headline consumer price index rose for a third straight month in September, beating forecasts, but the rate was still below the central bank's target, giving it room to keep monetary policy loose to aid growth.

Market heavyweights PTT and CP All rose 0.98 and 1.9 percent, respectively.

Singapore shares climbed 0.7 percent with blue chip stocks DBS Group Holdings and United Overseas Bank rising 1.2 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Malaysia edged down 0.2 percent and was headed for its 10th straight session of losses.


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