May 2, 2018 / 4:10 AM / 6 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Fall ahead of Fed decision on rates

    * Malaysia falls to its lowest in over 3 weeks
    * Singapore hovers at near 10-1/2 year high

    By Sumeet Gaikwad
    May 2 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets fell on
Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's upcoming policy
statement where investors await clues on the future pace of
monetary tightening.
    The two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting concludes
later in the global day. 
    The central bank raised its benchmark lending rate three
times in 2017 and the median forecast of policymakers on the
rate-setting committee is for another three this year.

    In Southeast Asia, Malaysian stocks snapped a
three-session gaining streak to fall 1.3 percent on broad-based
losses. 
    CIMB Group Holdings Bhd was the biggest drag on
the index, falling as much as 4 percent, while Axiata Group
 slipped 2.3 percent. 
    The sentiment is cautious ahead of the upcoming general
elections and investors are also weighing in at the start of a
new month, said Nik Ihsan, technical analyst at Maybank Kim Eng
Securities.
    The country's current prime minister, Najib Razak, is pitted
against his former mentor Mahathir Mohamad in the general
election to be held on May 9.
    Indonesia fell 0.2 percent, with United Tractors
 down 2.6 percent, and Semen Baturaja sliding
nearly 8 percent.
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
was down 0.2 percent. 
    Indonesia's annual inflation rate is seen inching up in
April from a month before, but still within the central bank's
target range, a Reuters poll showed. The data is due later in
the day.
    Thai shares slipped 0.2 percent as energy and real
estate stocks weighed on the benchmark. Oil and gas company PTT
Pcl was the biggest drag, down nearly 1 percent.
    Singapore was flat as gains in industrials were
offset by losses in technology stocks. The index is hovering at
a near 10-1/2-year high.
    Philippine shares fell 0.2 percent after three
straight sessions of gains, while Vietnam dropped 1.2
percent. 
    
        
For Asian Companies click;  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS: AS AT 0359 GMT
    
 Change on day                            
 Market          Current  Previous Close  Pct Move
 Singapore       3613.75  3613.93         0.01
 Bangkok         1775.89  1780.11         -0.24
 Manila          7803.19  7819.25         -0.21
 Jakarta         5980.5   5994.595        -0.24
 Kuala Lumpur    1846.22  1870.37         -1.29
 Ho Chi Minh     1037.39  1050.26         -1.23
                                          
 Change on year                           
 Market          Current  End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore       3613.75  3402.92         6.20
 Bangkok         1775.89  1753.71         1.26
 Manila          7803.19  8558.42         -8.82
 Jakarta         5980.5   6355.654        -5.90
 Kuala Lumpur    1846.22  1796.81         2.75
 Ho Chi Minh     1037.39  984.24          5.40
 
 (Reporting by Sumeet Gaikwad in Bengaluru; Editing by Biju
Dwarakanath)
  
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